Meet the Richmond Theatre Twelve

Meet the Richmond Theatre Twelve

23 September 2016

Who's who in the community cast for A Tale of Two Cities at Richmond Theatre?

Two Cities Twelve

A Tale of Two Cities arrives at its second stop on tour next week - Richmond Theatre! We'll be there from Tuesday 27th September - Saturday 1st October and will play seven performances. Richmond Theatre opened in September 1899 with their first performance being As You Like It. Its interior and exterior have been used as a movie set in many films, including Finding Neverland starring Johnny Depp.  

 

Two Cities Twelves 

A Tale of Two Cities is currently touring the UK from 20 September until 26 November 2016. Each week we arrive in a new city or town, we'll be working with a new cast of people from the local community. We're calling them the Twelves! Why? Well, they'll be joining our professional cast on stage as citizens of this Dickensian world, either as unruly mobs or jury members. Twelve is, of course, the size of a jury! 

 

So who's in the Richmond Twelve?

This week, we're joined by the Edmundian Players, a small drama group created in 1963 who put on two productions a year.


Rachel NicholasRachel Nicholas

Why did you want to be a part of this production?
I have gone to shows at Richmond Theatre from a young age and I have always wanted to take part in one myself. Performing in A Tale of Two Cities is such an amazing opportunity and it will really push me as an actress.  

What are you looking forward to from taking part?
I hope to broaden my knowledge of theatre and to learn from professional actors. I am looking forward to improving my skills as a young actress, and to have a wonderful time! 

What has been your experience of theatre so far?
I have been involved in various productions ranging from Five Kinds of Silence to musicals like Peter Pan. My most recent production with the Edmundian Players was The Wizard of Oz, in which I played Dorothy. Dorothy has been my favourite character to play so far and it was such an honor to be nominated for a Swan Award.

Interesting fact?
I absolutely love animals and I hope to travel the world to work with all kinds of different species! 

 

 

 

 


Amelia Kirk Amelia Kirk

Why did you want to be a part of this production?
Having always had a love for the theatre, as a performer and as part of the audience, the opportunity to be part of A Tale of Two Cities is fantastic and I'm so excited to expand my skills and knowledge of theatre.

What are you looking forward to from taking part?
I'm looking forward to meeting and perform with amazingly talented people and hope to learn as much as possible during this incredible opportunity.

What has been your experience of theatre so far?
I have been involved in several school productions. I started performing with the Edmundian Players in 2008, where I have enjoyed everything from musicals to more serious pieces. One of my favourite acting experiences was a production of Fame The Musical with the Beck Theatre's Summer Project.

Interesting fact?
I would like to watch a play in every country of the world.

 

 

 


Terry Bedell

Terry Bedell

Why did you want to be a part of this production?
I love life and live it to the full, with my wife and our three children. Theatre is as much of my life now as it was as a child and I am passionate about making theatre an important part of my children's lives too, regularly taking them to see plays in London and Richmond Theatre as often as possible.

I'm very much looking forward to working with you all and doing our part in helping to make the production and the experience a truly memorable one for our audiences and for all those involved.

What are you looking forward to from taking part?
I am incredibly excited to have been selected as one of the 'twelve' and to realise a life-long ambition to perform in a professional production, and on a stage where I have seen so many wonderful actors over the years.

What has been your experience of theatre so far?
I have had a love of theatre from a very young age. My Grandparents were avid theatre-goers throughout their lives and, as a child, I would often be taken to see plays at the Barbican, National Theatre & the Old Vic, where I was fortunate to see many of the 'greats' perform in an array of productions, mostly Shakespearian.

I joined the Edmundian Players age 16, and thoroughly enjoyed taking to the stage as well as experiencing and learning about the many facets of production. I left the Players to go to University and then moved to Hertfordshire where I settled for over a decade before returning back to Richmond Borough eight years ago. I immediately made contact with the Players and was delighted to find that many familiar faces were still there. I was welcomed back and re-joined immediately!

Since re-joining the group, I have played a number of roles, the most recent of which was Felix Ungar in The Odd Couple, which I have been nominated for Best Actor in the Richmond Arts Swan Awards. I have co-directed The Wizard of Oz, which was very well received by our audiences and been nominated for a number of awards.
 

Funny story?
Last year our Tin Man had to pull out of the first three performances of The Wizard of Oz. As a small group, we do not have the luxury of understudies, therefore, as Director, it fell to me to stand in at the last minute with script in one hand and axe in the other. This made page turning very difficult, and made the dance routines very interesting as I desperately tried to keep up with the rest of the cast whilst trying to keep my place in the script. Nevertheless, we made it through. Nobody was more relieved than me, however, when our real Tin Man made a recovery and returned for the remainder of the run.


Becky Halden

Why did you want to be a part of this production?
I have a huge passion for drama and this was an opportunity I could not miss! I am completely elated to be part of such a great play, working alongside a professional production with my fellow Edmundians!

What are you looking forward to from taking part?
I am looking forward to my first entrance onto the stage. My heart will be pounding with excitement and nerves!

What has been your experience of theatre so far?
My experiences include various pantomime roles with amateur dramatic groups from when I was 10-18 years old. Also working with Blood in the Alley Productions in both London and Ireland, where I was Stage Manager for This Ebony Bird and Romeo & Juliet.

I also have a degree in Drama from St Mary's University.

Funny story?
Having just passed my driving test in 2004, I drove my tiny, red, Fiat Cinquecento from London to Cork, Ireland, laden with the props for This Ebony Bird. Travelling with me was the Lighting Designer who couldn't drive or read a map!  


Lara ParkerLara Parker

Why did you want to be a part of this production?
In short, it was too much of an exciting opportunity to pass up on! I've always loved acting and have always told myself that if I ever got the chance to give it a go 'properly' then I would have to grab it with both hands, so that's exactly what I did!

What are you looking forward to from taking part?
The challenge of working in a professional cast with very little rehearsal time is terrifying yet thrilling.  Being a part of something so special alongside the other Edmundian Players is also very exciting and I hope will give us all a real insight into the profession and hopefully some tips and pointers on how we can make our own productions even better!

What has been your experience of theatre so far?
I was involved in drama throughout school and used to be a member of the St Michael's Players in Chiswick, where I had my first proper taste of panto.  I was in the Clink Theatre Group at Southbank University whilst studying my nursing diploma and then had a long break when I qualified as 12.5-hour shifts and working nights and weekends don't lend themselves to committing to rehearsals and performances.  Once I had my son and finally found a job with less antisocial hours, I found the Edmundian players and they haven't managed to get rid of me since!

Funny story?
My last part was the Wicked Witch of the West in The Wizard of Oz.  I loved playing her, but covering my whole face, neck and ears in green face paint every night was not so fun and it was the very devil to get off.  A number of people told me I looked ill in between the performances! I'm looking forward to slightly less make-up this time around!


Jackie HowtingJackie Howting

Why did you want to be a part of this production?
I wanted to be part of this production to fulfil my passion for performing on ‘Richmond Stage’ and I’m really looking forward to the experience of working with a professional company.

What are you looking forward to from taking part?
When I got accepted as one of the ‘Twelve’, the reality of it actually happening was nervous excitement! Neale and all the company have been so welcoming.

Interesting fact?
What will be so interesting for me is to actually be ‘treading the boards again’ as I am usually the Director for our local drama group, the Edmundian Players!

 

 

 

 

 

 


Matt NicholasMatt Nicholas

Why did you want to be a part of this production?
I love the idea of a touring cast making up their ensemble from actors local to each theatre. It's exciting to be involved in the tour and act in an adaptation of such a classic novel.

What are you looking forward to from taking part?
I’m looking forward to meeting and learning from new actors and directors.

What has been your experience of theatre so far?
I studied at Performing Arts School and have performed constantly since. My favourite role has been The Scarecrow from The Wizard of Oz.  

Interesting fact?
I make music!

 

 

 

 

 


Sue MillerSue Miller

Why did you want to be a part of this production?
I wanted to be part of this production because it has always been a dream of mine to perform in a professional theatre.  To watch and learn from professional actors is a privilege that so few of us amateurs ever get the chance to do. I've also always enjoyed Dickens' plays and A Tale of Two Cities is one of my favourites.

What are you looking forward to from taking part?
I'm looking forward to the challenge of something new and exciting. The rehearsals, I think they will be good fun, and of course to the performances. 

What has been your experience of theatre so far?
I have been a member of Edmundian Players for 17 years playing many different roles. I have been a member of Richmond Shakespear Society and also Crane Stage Club. 

I won an Arts Richmond Swan award (Richmond Arts Council) for Best Supporting Actress in 2000 and was nominated for a Swan for Best Supporting Actress a couple of years later.

Interesting fact?
I am 4' 10" which makes me stand out from the crowd...or not if someone's standing in front of me!

 

 


Matthew PowerMatt Power

Why did you want to be part of this production?
I've had the good fortune to appear at Richmond Theatre in the past and to have the opportunity to do so again, with a group of professionals in an exciting production like this is too good to miss.

What are you looking forward to from taking part?
Purely and simply the atmosphere and buzz of a full on production.

What has been your experience of theatre so far?
Since 2001, I have appeared in many amateur productions,  including Guys and Dolls, Carousel and Oliver! at Richmond (TOPS Musical Theatre Company).  Other productions include The King and I and Hook at the Edmundians.

Interesting story?
I had an engine failure on my second solo flight whilst training for my Pilot's License.
The plane crashed, but I walked away without a scratch!

 

 

 

 


Dave Young

What has been your experience of theatre so far?
I'm a veteran amateur dramatics person who has done everything from stage building, lighting, lead male role, to a pantomime dame. I have performed in the Orange Tree Theatre and won two awards from the Richmond Upon Thames Arts Council for acting and stage building.

Interesting fact?
30 years ago, when I was first coerced to help build a set, I swore blind that they would never get me on the stage...now I act, sing, dance badly and even have been known to wear a dress!
 

 

 


A Tale of Two Cities opens at Royal & Derngate, Northampton, where it plays from 10 to 17 September 2016. It then tours to Oxford Playhouse, Richmond Theatre, Bradford Alhambra, Blackpool Grand, Wolverhampton Grand, Brighton Theatre Royal, Edinburgh King's, Cheltenham Everyman and Nottingham Theatre Royal. 

Get tickets for this show by visiting our tour page.