Final Costume Designs

In this post costume designer Akshy Marayen has shared the above costume designs for some of the play’s supporting characters.

For the Apple Seller, Bundles, Chauffeur, Dog Catcher, LT Ward, Policeman and Usherette I researched 1930s work-wear uniforms and then considered how I could convey these job roles through costumes that maintain a consistent 1930s aesthetic.

The cast will start to work with their new costumes at our first dress rehearsal.

More Annie JR. Costume Designs!

We caught up with costume designer Akshy Marayen again this week, who shared a few more ideas with us.

Rooster is a con artist whose girlfriend Lily St. Regis serves as his accomplice. As a couple they are both vain and greedy which is reflected in their costumes.

Despite their lack of money, they enjoy looking fashionable and the attention it brings; in order to fund this lifestyle, they are willing to source money through dishonest means.  I was keen to make their costumes seem almost like a caricature of fashion and glamour in the 1930s.

I hoped to convey a similar idea when designing Miss Hannigan’s costume. I feel that Miss Hannigan uses clothes and jewellery as a method of escape from her own life. She adores to dress up in her own ideas of glamour, but often comes across as a clumsy attempt at such. This is why I wanted her costume to be slightly mismatched, with many different clashing colours.

Interview with Annie Cornewall-Walker

This week we had the pleasure of speaking with Dramacube Actor Annie Cornewall-Walker. Annie has appeared in numerous productions at Dramacube and recently played the role of Captain Hook in Peter Pan.  Annie is currently appearing in the touring production of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat.

Being part of a professional production must be really exciting.  Can you tell us about the audition process and what it was like when you were offered the part?

I got given the words to the songs and had to look at them quickly, they just put the music on and I had to just try and sing them! When they said I could join the cast I was really pleased and excited. Especially because there was no Dramacube show over the summer and I really wanted to be in something and had been looking

Can you tell us more about your involvement in the show and what you are required to do in terms of singing and dance?

I have to sing – a lot! I am part of the chorus & we are on stage all the time, we sit on steps going up both sides of the stage and we do all the back-up singing for every song through the production. We also have some ‘moves/dancing’.

What is it like working with a cast of professional adult actors?

It’s very exciting and I haven’t done anything like it before and we are obviously the youngest people there and it is quite exciting watching all the older people do their acting, dancing and singing.

They are really nice people and very friendly and they talk and chat to us…it is really exciting!

We often remind our actors at Dramacube how important it is to learn their lines and lyrics thoroughly. What techniques did you use to learn your lyrics for the show?

I put the songs on all the time and listened to them over and over again, and sang along to them constantly – around the house, in bed, in the car. Once you start singing them around the place, you get them in to your head.

Most of our shows at Dramacube are rehearsed once a week. How long was the rehearsal period for ‘Joseph’ and what was the process? (Ie; read through, blocking, choreography, singing etc)

There were not a lot of rehearsals (because it was over the summer holidays) so I was expected to learn it all at home, it takes  time to do it because you are learning the whole show, all the songs and a lot of words and we all knew them in the end so it was very good!

At rehearsals leading up to the show, we would go through all the songs and we sang all our parts. They were about 3 hours twice a week.

Were you nervous when you started the show and how did you overcome any first night nerves?

At first I was a little bit nervous because I wasn’t sure I was going to sing every word right but when you are on stage it just comes to you. Once I had done the first show I wasn’t nervous at all because I knew I could do it and I really loved it!

Which theatres have you performed at so far and where can we come and see you?

I am doing 2 different theatres – 5 or 6 shows at each. I have done Woking Theatre and I am going to perform at Richmond Theatre in October,

You’ve appeared in a number of Dramacube productions.  What has been your favourite and why?  

Peter Pan because it was my biggest part so far! I was Captain Hook so that was definitely my favourite and it was very exciting. I got to perform it at a few different places too!

I really liked ‘High School Musical’ too because there was a lot of dancing

What tips would you give to other young actors/actresses about going for auditions?

Stay calm, don’t be nervous – once you are in there you get used to it & most of the time they will tell you what to do and give you basic instructions that you can follow easily. It’s nerve racking at first but not for long because you know what you have to do

Looking ahead, what is next in the pipe-line for you?

Next year’s show at DRAMACUBE and hopefully more shows like ‘Joseph’ because I am really enjoying it – I would like to be an actor when I am older so I want to keep doing this so I can do bigger productions when I am older and have a big part like all the adults in the ‘Joseph’!

Win Theatre Tickets, Gift Vouchers and much More!!! 

Competition Time
Win Theatre Tickets, Gift Vouchers and much More!!! 
Here at Dramacube HQ, we love a bit of competition.
With this in mind, we will be running regular competitions on our Facebook page Dramacube Productions and via our Twitter feed @dramacubeshows.
Prizes will include lots of goodies such as theatre tickets, restaurant vouchers and money off Dramacube projects.
All you have to do is like, comment, post, share, retweet or follow! More details to follow via FB & Twitter #comingyourway #watchoutforfreebies #sharingthelove

Annie JR. Costume Designs

Annie in Hampton Hill, Richmond & Teddington

Costume Designs by Akshy Marayen

With our rehearsals at our Richmond & Kingston, Twickenham & Teddington and Hampton Hill & Sunbury locations starting this week, the creative team behind the scenes have been busy preparing for the production.  In this post, costume designer Akshy Marayen shares some of her designs for the Orphans.

The above image details the orphan costumes.

During The Great Depression in 1933 many children found themselves orphaned and living in poverty.

When designing the orphans’ costumes I conducted thorough research to find out what these children might have been wearing. Most of their clothing would have been donations likely to have been ill-fitting and in poor condition, and would have got progressively worse through wear and tear.

Having a background in textiles I understand that each part of wear and breakdown serves to illustrate specific parts of the character’s story.

The children’s clothes would be dirty and worn down as they are cleaning all day and would be faded through overuse.

The colour of their clothes would be dull and murky, because whenever washed it is likely they were all washed at the same time making the clothes greyer.

I was also very keen that the orphan costumes contrasted dramatically with the wealthier class that Oliver Warbucks associates with.

Dramacube Half Term Halloween Workshop

Join us for a thrilling three-day half term workshop this October! 

Inspired by scary songs, spooky tales and creepy dance routines from stage and screen, this workshop will certainly set the scene for

Acting, Singing, Dance Workshop

Half Term Workshop

Halloween.

Children will participate in acting, singing and dance, all supported by a professional director, choreographer and musical director. They will work towards a performance under the lights on day three – free for family and friends!

Days one and two will be at the United Reformed Church (on Hampton Hill High Street). The technical rehearsal, dress rehearsal and performance will be in the Noel Coward Studio at Hampton Hill Theatre on day three.

Who:    Children aged 7-14yrs

When:  Wednesday 25th – Friday 27th October, 9.30am – 4.00pm

Price:   £99 (Save £10 when you quote “Stanley School”) Sibling discounts also available, though only one discount may be applied.

Register today through our Online Form, by email contact@dramacube.co.uk or by phone on 020 8408 0245.

www.dramacubeproductions.co.uk

Dramacube Scoop Two Awards!!!

Milly Stephens and Finn Bralow won Best Girl Performer and Best Boy Performer aged 14 and under at the 2016-17 Richmond Arts Swan Awards.  Milly and Finn were among six Dramacube actors who received nominations.

Well-known television and theatre actress Samantha Bond presented the evening at the impressive Landmark Arts Centre in Teddington.

The annual award ceremony celebrates theatre throughout the Richmond borough.

Two Award Winners and Six Nominees

After receiving his award, Finn Bralow, with a huge smile on his face, said “I feel so proud and I couldn’t have done it without my parents”

Receiving six nominations, including Best Youth Production, was a tremendous honour for us.  We’ve produced seven major productions over the past two and a half years. During that time we’ve worked with so many talented performers. As a result it was wonderful to see some of our young actors being recognized for their hard work and commitment.

Two-time nominee Tom Stephens aged 9 said: “Dramacube is like a second family to me. Since my first production in 2015, it’s been a big part of my life. It feels like I’ve been with Dramacube for longer than 2 years. I know the team so well and they have been so supportive of my achievements.”  Tom has starred as Schlomo in Fame Jr., Edward in The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, Warbucks in Annie Jr., Mr. Wormwood in Matilda and Hook in Peter Pan. He is currently rehearsing for The Queen’s executioner in Alice in Wonderland at the Rose Theatre, Kingston.

Ross Westgate, father of Swan Award nominee Amber Westgate said: “Dramacube is a brilliant opportunity for young people to discover or improve their acting abilities in a fun, friendly and welcoming environment. The confidence that can be gained from performing, for any child can be an important factor in their overall development. ”

We are incredibly proud of all our young actors. We look forward to many more wonderful productions.

Richmond & Kingston Venue Launched

Award winning youth production company Dramacube have opened a new location at Tiffin Girls School on the Richmond Road in Kingston.
The new venue will host the Richmond and Kingston Cast rehearsals for Annie JR. from late September.

Based in the new studio theatre, students aged 7 – 14yrs will work with a professional director, choreographer and musical director on the show, which will be performed at the impressive Hampton Hill Theatre in December.

If your son or daughter enjoys acting, singing or dance and you’d like more information about Dramacube Richmond & Kingston visit www.dramacubeproductions.co.uk or email contact@dramacube.co.uk

Interview with Abigail Eggleton

This week we caught up with Dramacube actor Abigail Eggleton who has been nominated at this years’ Richmond Arts Swan Awards.Congratulations on receiving your nomination for the Richmond Arts Swan Awards in the category of Best Girl Performer aged 14 and under.

Which show were you nominated for and which role did you play?

I was nominated for ELF, and I played Jovie

Being nominated for Best Girl Performer is a huge achievement. Can you explain how you prepared for the role and what you did to create your character?

I read through the script before line – learning and thought about how Jovie felt . I also watched the film.

Playing a principle role often requires lots of line learning. What techniques did you use to learn your lines and can you offer any top tips?

Learn your lines just before bed, sleeping helps you remember what you have learned

Did you have many songs to learn in the show and which was your favourite?

I had one song to myself, but I more enjoyed singing solos in A Christmas Song

What did you enjoy most about the rehearsal process?

Learning the songs

What did you enjoy most about performing at Hampton Hill Theatre?

The mikes and costumes were very exciting

Well done again for receiving your nomination and we wish you the very best of luck at the Swan Awards ceremony.

Annie JR Abstract Design Concepts

The final two drawings for Annie JR. which set designer Sally Somerville-Woodiwis has included take on a more abstract feel.

The image to the right (4) is once again based on a general set up.

I have used a sheet with wallpaper print for Warbucks’ mansion.

I really like all the images of the washing lines between streets from the 1930’s.  So I thought we could change the scenes by pulling washing lines across the stage and have 3 or 4 large sheets that have a background for each scene on them.

As an example, for Warbucks’ home a rich wallpaper printed onto a sheet, for the orphanage a disintegrating wall texture on the sheet and for the Hoverville / street scenes a painted image of the bridge.

I’m still thinking of having a city-scape behind the sheets, it could even give some nice silhouettes onto the sheets if lit form behind.

I’ve attached the ‘washing line’ from the left poor house to the mansion on the right and moved the offices down stage in the corners.

 

Image 5 represents the  Hoverville scene.

This is similar to the above but without the buildings either side and more washing lines.

Also instead of it pulling sheets across large sheets would fly in which reduces the burden on the actors to change the scene.