Summer Holiday Workshops

Beauty & the Beast Summer Holiday Workshops

We are delighted to confirm our three-day Summer-holiday workshops which will run throughout August at venues across Hampton Hill and Twickenham.

Inspired by the classic ‘Tale as Old as Time’ Beauty & the Beast, children will explore the story and the many colourful characters as they build towards a performance for each other on the afternoon of day three.

Wednesday 5th – Friday 7th August at the Hampton Hill United Reformed Church (Fully booked.  Please register for waiting list) 

Wednesday 12th – Friday 14th August at the Exchange Theatre, Twickenham

Tuesday 25th – Thursday 27th August at Hampton Hill Theatre (Fully booked.  Please register for waiting list) 

The workshops, which run from 9.30am to 4.00pm are ideally suited to children aged 7-14 years old who love to perform.

£115 for 3 days (10% sibling discount applies)

In-line with Government guidelines workshop numbers will be limited to 15 children.

For further information and booking please visit our Workshop page.

In other news, discussions with Hampton Hill theatre are on-going with regards to staging Dramacube’s production of Annie Jr. which was cancelled prior to opening on 18th March.  Although no date has yet been set, the recent news about theatres reopening from 1st August will hopefully see the young cast return to the stage sooner than previously thought.

Dramacube will resume weekly performing arts classes from September in Hampton Hill and Twickenham with a view to producing another show early next year once Annie Jr. has been staged.  Classes will be open to existing cast and new members.

Hampton Hill Cast

Annie Jr. Update

After a frustrating four months of uncertainty, yesterday we finally received the news we’d all been waiting for.

Twickenham Cast perform Annie Jr.

Twickenham Cast perform Annie Jr. at Hampton Hill Theatre

Theatres will start to re-open from August 1st subject to initial pilots.  This welcome news came on the same day as a meeting with Hampton Hill Theatre who have continued to pledge their support in helping us to get the show back on as soon as they re-open.

Whilst the Annie. Jr set will have to be moved in advance of our Summer Holiday Workshop which will take place on the main stage at Hampton Hill Theatre, discussions have focused on how the set, props and costumes can be safely stored in preparation for use when the time comes.

At present the Theatre have planned to re-open in January 2021, however with the news which emerged yesterday, perhaps there is hope we may see that date brought forward.

We have also been exploring the option of an open-air production, however efforts have been unsuccessful due to the current restrictions on group sizes and live performance.

With the prospect of Annie Jr. being staged again at Hampton Hill theatre, plans are being discussed as to how we can best prepare children for the performance.  Although nothing has been confirmed as yet, we feel this is most likely to be a combination of short on-line rehearsals, working through each scene, followed by larger group rehearsals at the Theatre for singing and dance recaps with our creative team.

Whatever happens over the coming months, we will continue to work towards a date when our four young casts can regroup and perform their amazing shows.  We very much look forward to welcoming you back.

Annie Jr. Hampton Hill Theatre

Production Update 

It was almost two weeks ago that Hampton Hill Theatre closed due to growing concerns about the Coronavirus, thus denying our young actors the opportunity to perform their Spring term production of Annie Jr. This was hugely disappointing for all involved particularly as everyone had worked so hard in the build up to opening night.

So what has happened in those two weeks?

Our priority is to ensure our Hampton Hill and Twickenham casts are given their opportunity to perform Annie Jr. as soon as possible.  We believe every project should provide a platform for children to not only share their work, but to feel a sense of achievement and accomplishment at the end of it and we are determined to make this happen for our students.

The two largest barriers to overcome concern performance rights and venue and I’m delighted to confirm that we’ve taken positive steps forward on both fronts.

Music Theatre International have agreed to pend the existing license until the situation becomes clearer giving us the option to perform the show outside of the agreed period without incurring further costs.  We are extremely grateful to MTI for their flexibility and support.

The situation with Hampton Hill Theatre is a little less clear but at the time of writing our wonderful set is still standing on stage with costumes stored safely in the dressing room.  The Theatre has kindly offered to look after our set for the next three months until we know more, and we have put in a request to stage our production as soon as the venue re-opens.  We’ll keep our fingers crossed that the Theatre are able to accommodate us, however if not, we will look for an alternative venue where we can stage the show.  We will of course keep you updated on developments and give you as much notice as possible when we have dates confirmed.

Thank you for your ongoing support and we look forward to seeing you all again soon.

Easter Holiday Workshop

With the Easter holidays just around the corner, we are delighted to share details of our three-day musical theatre workshop which is inspired by the classic ‘Tale as Old as Time’, Beauty & the Beast.

The workshop, which is ideally suited to children aged 7-14 years old who love to act, sing and dance is taking place at Hampton Hill Theatre from Monday 6th to Wednesday 8th April (9.30am to 4.00pm).

Hampton Hill Theatre is located nearby to Hampton, Teddington and Twickenham.

Children will spend three days exploring the story, devising scenes, learning songs and rehearsing routines as they build towards a performance under the lights on the main stage for family and friends to enjoy on the afternoon of day three.

The workshop is being run by Director Matthew Bunn with Musical Theatre teacher Abbey Mordue.

Book your child’s place here. 

Annie Jr. Cast

Music Theatre International – Guidance on Casting Decisions

Trust the director’s judgement.  The director is casting an ensemble, not just one or two ‘lead’ roles. It’s so important for the cast to understand the importance of working together as an ensemble and to see the production as a whole – not as individual parts that seem less or more important than others.

Remind your child that everyone’s contribution is important and valued.

Let your child discuss ideas for characteristics for his or her role.  Is she peppy or indifferent? Is he confident or awkward? Ultimately, the director might have specific character qualities in mind, but this will introduce your child to the basics of acting.

Take the role to another level by encouraging your child to create a ‘back story’ for his or her character.  Where is the character from? Why is the character in the show? Half the fun is that the audience never has to know the character’s back story, but this exploration by your child will round out the character even more.  Again, have fun, but create a story that works realistically within the director’s vision for the show.

After the casting, some children may wish to count their lines, but this should be discouraged.  The author’s created every character for a reason, and each role impacts the entire production.

Wizard of Oz at Hampton Hill Theatre

Wizard of Oz Production Photos

We are delighted to share with you the lovely production photos from The Wizard of Oz. You can view the photos by clicking on the links below.

Hampton Hill Green

Hampton Hill Blue Cast

Twickenham Blue Cast

Twickenham Green Cast

Digital copies of the photos can be ordered directly from the photographer at a cost of £4 per image. please follow the steps below.

Step one:
Calculate the total (£4 x however many photos you would like) Transfer the money to; Bomi Cooper / 11-14-58 / 10271268. Please add your child’s name as the reference.

Step two:
Email bomicooperphotography@yahoo.com the list if file names along with your child’s name

Step three:
Bomi will send the photos to you via email.

Annie Jr. Characters

Leading Roles:

(** = Solo)

Annie**
Miss. Hannigan**
Grace Farrell**
Drake
Oliver Warbucks**

Supporting Roles:

Molly**
Pepper**
Duffy**
Kate**
Tessie**
July**
Officer Ward
Rooster Hannigan**
Lily St. Regis**
Bert Healy

Smaller Speaking/solo Roles:

Bundles McCloskey
Apple Seller
Dog Catcher
Sandy(Singing only)**
Cecille
Annette
Mrs. Greer
Mrs. Pugh
Star-to-Be (Singing only)**
Man in Brownstone Window
Usherette
Radio Announcer
President Franklin Delano Roosevelt
Louis Howe

Ensemble:

Sound Effects Man
Ensemble Orphans
Servants/Manservants
Policeman
Children
New Yorkers

We are delighted to announce our Spring Term production is Annie Jr!

Orphan Molly

Based on the popular comic strip and adapted from the Tony Award-winning Best Musical, with a beloved book and score by Tony Award-winners, Thomas Meehan, Charles Strouse and Martin Charnin, Annie JR. features everyone’s favorite little redhead in her very first adventure.

With equal measures of pluck and positivity, little orphan Annie charms everyone’s hearts despite a next-to-nothing start in 1930s New York City.

Annie is determined to find the parents who abandoned her years ago on the doorstep of an orphanage run by the cruel Miss Hannigan.

Annie eventually foils Miss Hannigan’s evil machinations, finding a new home and family in billionaire Oliver Warbucks, his personal secretary, Grace Farrell, and a lovable mutt named Sandy.

With plenty of parts to go around and all your favourite numbers including; ‘Hard Knock Life’, ‘Maybe’ and ‘Tomorrow’, Annie JR. is an ideal productions for our youth company ensuring every one of our young actors is fully involved throughout with lines, songs and routines to learn.

Rehearsals/Locations

Rehearsals take place at Hampton Hill Theatre on Tuesday afternoons, the United Reformed Church in Hampton Hill on Wednesday afternoons, and St. Mary’s University, Twickenham on a Saturday.

Next Auditions 

Auditions for our Spring term show will be held on Sunday 24th November from 10.30am – 1.00pm at Hampton Hill Theatre.

Auditions are run in workshop format and are great fun for all involved.  Children participating in the workshop will learn a song from the show and work on some short scenes and movement in small groups.

There will also be an opportunity to ask questions about the production and find out more about Dramacube shows.

We will contact parents within 5 days of the audition to offer places.

There is a £20 audition fee which will be deducted from the project fee when a child joins the company or refunded if a place cannot be offered.

Existing company members are not required to attend this session.

Click here to register for the workshop audition on Sunday 24th November at Hampton Hill Theatre.  Please note; all students must register prior to the audition.

We look forward to welcoming you to Hampton Hill Theatre.

The Lion, the Witch & the Wardrobe – Best Youth Production Nomination

With the Arts Richmond Swan Awards less than a week away, we caught up with Stephen Leslie to talk about the Christmas 2018

production of The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe which has been nominated for Best Youth Production.

Twickenham Red Cast

Why did you choose The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe as your Christmas show last year?

We first produced the show at Hampton Hill Theatre in December 2015.  It was only our second ever production and we had one cast who rehearsed at the theatre and gave two performances just before Christmas. 

It was a great show and two of our cast were nominated for Arts Richmond Swan awards which was the first time we’d received a nomination. 

Hampton Hill Cast

The show was very popular, but there were a number of challenges when casting, because there were only a handful of speaking parts and then a very large ensemble. 

I had wanted to do the show again for a while but the issue of parts was still there so eventually I contacted the writer, Irita Kutchmy to ask if she would consider an edit? 

Iritia was extremely helpful and granted us permission to edit the show, and in doing so create additional characters, thus making the production more suitable for our cast. 

It was such a pleasure to stage the production again and made for a truly magical Christmas show.

How did you plan to make the production different?

The biggest difference was definitely the script, with large sections cut and changes to the music, plus the addition of new characters with

Twickenham Green Cast

speaking parts.  This made the rehearsal process more inclusive and provided a better opportunity for more actors.

We had a completely different back stage team for the production and Akshy’s costume ideas and Christine’s set concept were really impressive from the very first production meeting. 

In our original production, the stage was dominated by the wardrobe which worked well, but presented us with the challenge of getting a huge structure on and off the stage.  This time, we wanted the wardrobe to be ever present once it had been revealed so Christine came up with the idea of having it up stage right, which enabled us to create the illusion of children stepping into it, then finding themselves in Narnia on the other side. 

We also had four casts this time so got to see so many more brilliant performances from both our Twickenham and Hampton Hill students.

Overall it felt like a very different show to the previous production in 2015. 

What challenges did you encounter during production week?

Twickenham Blue Cast

The production week actually ran very smoothly which was largely thanks to our brilliant back stage team, Akshy, Christine and Dani, plus everyone else who was around to support. 

It became evident very quickly that the show was much bigger than we’d originally anticipated. 

We had a team of eleven people on the production with three in the dressing room helping with quick changes, three stage left helping to manoeuvre the Witches sleigh on and off, plus people stage right and above the stage releasing the snow for the Narnia entrances.  We were really fortunate to have such a great team who all worked very hard that week.  

Tell us about the nomination.

The Arts Richmond judges see so many productions and there are thousands of incredibly talented young performers in this borough so to be nominated for anything is always really nice. 

We’ve been nominated for Best Youth Production in the Under 19 category which is high praise for our actors as most of them are no older than 13 with an average age of 10. 

Unfortunately it also means that we tend to be up against groups with teenage casts which is hard to compete with but we are delighted with the nomination and to be in the final three is a great achievement. 

The Lion, the Witch & the Wardrobe was a challenging production for all involved.  Despite the edit, it was still very wordy and the music can be difficult to learn for students so we are really proud of what we achieved and I’d like to take this opportunity

I’ll be keeping everything crossed for an award on 15th September!

With the Arts Richmond Swan Awards ceremony only two weeks away, we caught up with nominee Ethan O’Keeffe to ask him about his nomination.

Which role have you been nominated for and in which production?

Ethan OKeeffe played The Sultan

I have been nominated for my role as the Sultan in Dramacube’s production of Aladdin.

Tell us about your audition and what you did to get the part?

I did my audition in January but was going for the part of Aladdin. In the end, I think that I enjoyed playing the part of the Sultan more as it allowed me to add comedy to my acting.

How did you prepare for the role?

I prepared for my role by practising each line multiple times in different tones as it meant that I could get the most out of every line.

What did you love the most about your character?

The thing I love most about the Sultan is that although he is the most powerful person in Agrabah he is very daft and gullible. Because of this I had many comical and humorous lines 

What was the biggest challenge you faced when developing the role?

The biggest challenge I faced was not being able to go over the top with my actions as he (The Sultan) is quite a royal and elderly figure.

What techniques did you use to learn your lines?

The techniques I used to learn my lines were mainly repeating my lines multiple times and learning them one section at a time. Because of this, it did not feel too difficult and I was able to memorize my lines in detail.

How did you feel on the first night?

On the night, I felt very anxious, though it was my fifth production with Dramacube so I sort of knew what to expect whilst on stage. 

What was your favourite part about performing the show?

My favourite part about doing the production was working together with the whole cast to produce an amazing play.

We’d like to take this opportunity to congratulate Ethan on his achievement and wish him every success at the awards ceremony.