Tuesday, 27 June 2017

A Quick Catch-Up!

Firstly, our apologies for the radio silence - things have been rather bonkers behind the scenes of late!

However, to make up for it, we have a bumper edition of news and updates, starting with Jack and the Beanstalk...

We were blessed with an entirely sold out pantomime run, a first in Strollers history! Normally, for reasons unknown, the first Saturday night is slow to sell and never quite makes it to full - but not this year!

Our cast and crew were chuffed with the result, and as such it's meant we've been able to give another fantastic set of donations to Island charities and good causes.

At our AGM in April, we donated £2,500 to The Bus Shelter IOW, £2,300 to the 1st Newport Scouts, £1,000 to the Isle of Wight Society for the Blind, and we purchased our sixth Public Access Defibrillator for the Isle of Wight - wow!

We also had a our committee elections at the AGM, with our chairman, Mike Sutcliffe, standing down after 12 years of service and our treasurer, Brian Whitewood, standing down after 9 years.

"Every year I report that we have had a pretty successful 12 months," said Mike in his final chairman's report. "I can't do that this time round because the last year hasn't been pretty successful - it's been ruddy amazing."

He went on to praise the work of the cast, crew and committee, and the loyalty of our audience members old and new in helping us to continue to play to sell-out houses.

"I always end my report with the same words, because I can't think of better ones," he finished. "The fact that we have staged two amazing productions and that we can donate so much to our good causes...is down to all of you, who give so freely of your money, your time and your various special talents. So, on behalf of our audiences, our charities, the committee and myself, I sincerely thank you all."

Both Mike and Brian have been absolutely incredible and there aren't words enough to thank them for everything they've done for the Strollers. It's safe to say they will be missed on the committee, but their successors are worthy ones and the new committee is looking forward to continuing the wonderful work done under the guidance of its predecessors.

Taking the reins from Mike is Gerry Tulloch, one of the founding Strollers and a former member of the Nesta Meech School of Dance, from which the company originated.

From dancing to directing,  performing performing to creating the most spectacular costumes (including last year's Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat!), Gerry is part of the very fibre of The Wight Strollers and the company could not be in safer hands.

Joining her on committee is Leslie Kast as Treasurer, along with the confirmed director of our next two productions, Sarah Scotcher, with Judith Day reprising her role as Secretary.

Mike Squibb and Emily Scotcher (yours truly!) were both reelected, whilst Nicola Steedman, Aly Keele-Toms and David Kast also continue to serve their terms on committee, and the company also elected two new members in Elisa Jones and Andrew Wilson-Jenner.

In more Strollers news, we will once again be appearing at the Island's carnivals this summer; although our theme, as always, is top secret for now, we can promise that it's going to get the crowds buzzing!

We have also been able to announce our next two productions, our February 2018 pantomime and our July 2018 musical.

On February 10th, 11th and 17th, we will be returning to Medina Theatre to perform Cinderella, one of the best-loved pantomimes and a firm favourite with many of the cast. The script is underway, the casting process has started, and the production team are starting to put together ideas to make this our most magical pantomime yet!

Following that, on July 6th, 7th and 8th 2018, we will be performing our second musical when we tackle the fabulous Priscilla, Queen of the Desert. It's colourful, it's fast-paced, it's funny and it's packed with floor-fillers like 'I Will Survive', 'Go West', 'It's Raining Men', 'Hot Stuff' and 'What's Love Got To Do With It?' - it's one you won't want to miss!

Phew! It looks like we're in for our biggest and most bonkers year yet, if all that is anything to go by!

We'll be back again soon with carnival updates, pantomime news and a few sneaky hints at how our planning for Priscilla is going...

...It's good to be back!


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