Bar production an American classic
BELOVED Rodgers and Hammerstein musical Oklahoma! moseys onto the main stage of the Little Theatre this Saturday courtesy of BOS Musical Theatre Company until June 2.
Then from June 5 we travel from the American Mid-West to the Californian coast for the finale of our in-house SDC season, Bernard Slade’s bittersweet romantic comedy Same Time Next Year, in the intimate settings of the Little Theatre bar.
The 1975 play, also a hit film starring Alan Alda and Ellen Burstyn, follows two people who meet by chance in a hotel and spend a wonderful night together.
They agree to meet again at the same time, the following year. This continues over two decades. Directing a bar production is very different to working the main stage.
Taking on this challenge is first-time director Lynne Hawksworth.
Lynne’s love affair with theatre was first ignited as a nine-year-old when she was a dancing polar bear in a school production of The Snow Queen.
Fast forward to August 2010 and she took early retirement from teaching English.
SDC member Sandra Unsworth persuaded her to join the club and she quickly established herself as a regular prompt.
The process of following a play from first rehearsal to final performance soon had her gripped, observing an array of directors with varied styles.
Being assistant director for two plays gave her the confidence to say “yes” to the Play Selection and Casting Committee when they approached her about leading her own production.
Lynne is delighted to have been blessed with two very talented and experienced actors in Les Gomersall and Trudi Hirsch for her directorial debut.
She began with definite ideas of when each character would move and how they would say lines, but as rehearsals have progressed this has evolved collaboratively, allowing the characters of Doris and George to go with the flow.
Her biggest challenge has been the shift from studying the script to surveying her actors through new director’s eyes.
She feels lucky to have the experienced Jenny Parker supporting the process and prompting the dialogue.
She is now working with the club’s staging teams to finalise the sound, lighting, set, props and also the costumes to ensure they both convey the passing of 25 years and are also kind to the actors for quick changes.
She says “I hope that my vision of Bernard Slade’s cleverly written script does it justice, and that the audiences enjoy it as much as I have enjoyed directing it.
“Many thanks to the club for allowing me to tick off another item on my bucket list!”
Oklahoma! runs from May 26 to June 2 (with a BSL interpreted performance on May 28) and Same Time Next Year from June 5-9.
For tickets, productions and show times, ring our box office on 01704 530521 / 530460, check out littletheatresouthport.co.uk or follow us on Facebook /SouthportLittleTheatre.
Lynne Hawksworth has taken the reins to direct her first show – the bar production of Bernard Slade’s Same Time Next Year