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Round and Round the Garden

A great English comedy by Alan Ayckbourn
from his trilogy
The Norman Conquests

Directed by Judith Boyd
August -September    2006

 

 

Alan Ayckbourn

Sir Alan Ayckbourn is internationally renowned for his writing and plays such as The Norman Conquests are regarded as classics of 20th century British theatre. His plays are often described as being middle-class and suburban, although this is a rather dated view of his work.

While the description would be generally correct for his work during the 1960s and 1970s, since the 1980s, Alan’s work has become ever more expansive, dealing with wider social issues and often utilizing more fantastic ideas and settings to explore his themes. He has also become a passionate advocate of writing for young people and has written more than a dozen full length plays for families and young people and a number of one-act plays for children.

If one was to generalize about Alan’s large body of work, that now covers practically five decades, it would be that he writes about men and women, their relationships and their general inability to live with each other. His work is also characterized by its tragi-comedy themes and his constant willingness to experiment with stage time and space, which led the renowned critic Michael Billington to label him as one of the few British playwrights to be constantly pushing the envelope of theatre.


Sir Alan is also committed to theatre-in-the-round, for which he has written the vast majority of his plays. It is always worth remembering that when he stages a play in London or anyone performs one in the proscenium arch, it is a step away from the author’s original intention. It has frequently been stated that the definitive production of any of Ayckbourn's plays is the premiere production in the round in Scarborough.


Alan has a close relationship with Scarborough, where he lives and has worked for most of his professional career. He has been artistic director of what is now the Stephen Joseph Theatre since 1972 and has premiered all but four plays (Christmas V Mastermind, Mr Whatnot, Jeeves and A Small Family Business) in Scarborough.

More than half his plays have gone on to London to be produced in the West End or at the National Theatre. At one point, he held the record for having the most professional productions of his work being performed simultaneously in the West End (The Norman Conquests, Absurd Person Singular and Absent Friends). His work has been translated into more than 40 languages and his plays are regularly performed throughout the world

 

Judith Boyd - Director

Judith joined the Lieder Theatre in September 2001 having moved to the area from Sydney where she has been an active member of the Castle Hill Players for almost twenty-five years and ran the Castle Hill Youth Theatre for much of that time. She was also a drama teacher at The Hills Grammar School and has adjudicated at several country drama festivals in NSW. She attended a part time Drama School in England before moving with her family to Australia in 1978. Judith has been involved in over one hundred plays in one way or another. In more recent years she has directed plays including The Birthday Party, The Homecoming, Twelve Angry Men, Nuts, Agnes of God, Oh What a Lovely War, Toad of Toad Hall, Educating Rita, and has acted in The Homecoming, Blithe Spirit, Bold Girls, Equus, and Don’s Party. Judith attended the writing course at NIDA in 1992, and subsequently had plays performed at NIDA and at the National Playwrights Conference in Canberra. Judith is an active member of the Lieder having directed Once A Catholic, Sylvia, Hating Alison Ashley, Urbs Urbis and The Odd Couple (female version). She has run workshops and written for the Lieder Youth Theatre’s 2 Friendly 4 Words and Dead One Done, performed in The Beauty Queen of Leenane, The Memory of Water and Blithe Spirit, provided administrative support and promotion for productions and operated lights for Pinocchio. She currently runs weekly after school drama classes with the Youth Theatre Company.

Cast

Reg

 

David Rayner

Sarah, his wife

 

Pauline J Mullen

Ruth, Reg’s sister

 

Fiona Churchill

Norman, her husband

 

Martin Sanders

Annie, Reg & Ruth’s younger sister

 

Jenny Hart

Tom

 

Greg Seckold


Crew

Director/ designer

 

Judith Boyd

Stage manager

 

Martin Yeadon

Head of construction

 

John Knops

Scenic Artist

 

Lee Gray

Assisted by

 

Josh Travers, Louise Boyd-Lowen  Judith  Boyd

Construction assistance

 

John Hartnet, Colin Simson, Clare Hayes, Piper-May Holmes

Papier mache goober experts

 

Sarah Harris, Katherine, Andrew & David Rayner, John Knops

Gardeners

 

Judith Boyd, Colin Simson, Doreen Mullen, John Knops

Lights operated by

 

Paul Fox

Sound operated by

 

Martin Yeadon

prompt

 

Melissa Chandler Kathy Campbell

Tickets

 

Doreen Mullen

Photographs

 

Tina Milson

Front of House manager

 

Colin Simson

Newsletter editor

 

Brian Hill

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CAST

 

Martin Sanders – Norman

He was last seen on stage in The Tempest and last year in Treasure Island. Other performances at the Lieder include Shatterproof, The Ballad of Mary Brownlow, Oliver Twist, Blackrock, Babes in the Wood The Removalists, , Forks’n All, The Homecoming of Beorhtnoth, Pinocchio, La Dispute, Dracula and John Spicer’s production of Hamlet.

Greg Seckold – Tom

Greg started performing in his early years as a magician with appearances in shopping malls and on children’s TV shows. A stint in the Carlingford Entertainers in the late 70s and 80s saw Greg playing romantic leads, narrators and villains (his favourite). He is currently a domestic engineer building his own house although at one time Greg was an avid go-cart racer and IT expert. His first adventure onto the Lieder stage was as a Spaniard in The Odd Couple (female version) directed by Judith Boyd last year. He has come straight from a role in The Tempest and before that The Memory of Water.

 

Pauline J Mullen – Sarah

Pauline joined the Lieder in 1992 to stage manage Peter Pan and has been an integral part of the Company on and off stage ever since Pauline provides essential production and wardrobe support to all the plays and performance events staged by the Company. Her performances include roles in The Odd Couple (female version), Inheritance, The Ballad of Mary Ann Brownlow, Come Back to the Five and Dime Jimmy Dean, Jimmy Dean, Minefields and Miniskirts, The Beauty Queen of Leenane, Habeas Corpus, The Removalists, La Dispute, Hamlet, Oliver Twist, Wind in the Willows, Dancing at Lughnasa, Under Milk Wood, Blackrock, Gathering the Dust, Dark of the Moon, On the Bridge, The Vagina Monologues, On a Day in Summer in a Garden, Out of the Frying Pan, Forks’n All and The Man Who. She has been the Lieder’s wardrobe coordinator since 2001.

 

Jennifer Hart – Annie

This is Jenny’s sixth production with the Lieder having performed in last year’s productions of Blithe Spirit and The Odd Couple (female Version), our 2003Christmas production of Old Time Music Hall and in our 2004 production, Away followed by some unforgettable characters in Judith Boyd’s hilarious production of Hating Alison Ashley. She came to Goulburn from Newcastle in 1993 and began performing with the Argyle Society. Her shows there include The Merry Widow, Thanks for the Memory, Sweet Hearts, Trial by Jury, Mikado, A fine Romance, Nothing Like a Dame, Iolanthe, As Time Goes By, Pirates of Penzance, Ruddigore, Di Fledermaus and La Belle Helene. Jenny also performed in the inaugural GRAB Festival (Goulburn Regional Arts Bash) in 1996.

Fiona Churchill – Ruth

Fiona joined the Lieder in 1995 to play in Golden Valley and since then has been seen in many productions including the Farndale Murder Mystery, Oliver, Hamlet, Blackrock, Under Milk Wood, Cosi, The Removalists and On the Bridge. In 2002 she performed in Habeas Corpus and in 2003 in Judith Boyd’s canine comedy Sylvia, and a rehearsed reading of The Vagina Monologues. In 2004 Fiona performed in Come Back to the Five and Dime Jimmy Dean, Jimmy Dean and the rehearsed reading Minefields and Miniskirts. Last year she performed in Hannie Rayson’s Inheritance, Blithe Spirit and The Odd Couple (female version) as well as our foyer production of Fireface. She was last seen on the mainstage in The Memory of Water earlier this year. When not in a show Fiona has worked backstage as a lighting operator and is currently on the Lieder Board of Management coordinating charity nights for the mainstage.

 

David Rayner – Reg

David made his debut on stage at the age of nine in the Rockhampton Little Theatre’s Wizard of Oz. He subsequently appeared on the small screen (briefly) with the crew from Aunty Jack in the ABC’s Flash Nick from Jindavick. David has been an active member of the Argyle Society and appeared in their productions of Godspell and La Belle Helene. With the Argyle Society he co-wrote and directed Who Murdered Lenny the Louse, which was so successful it had a return season. For the Lieder David has performed in our 2003 Christmas production of Old Time Music Hall directed by Stan Henderson, Away, our peace celebration at St Saviour’s Cathedral Forks’n All (a feast for peace) and The Memory of Water earlier this year.