40th Drama Festival
Sedgefield Players swept the board at their 40th Drama Festival in September, winning 13 of the 20 trophies. Best Production, ‘ The Night Before Christmas’, a hilarious comedy by Anthony Neilson, also won the Audience Award, the Ensemble Award and Best 30 Seconds. Tom Guest was awarded Best Director for this production. He also directed the Players in ‘Albertine in Five Times’, which won the Adjudicator’s Award and Jayne’s Award for Costume. Liz Flanagan was declared Best Supporting Actress for her performance as Albertine aged 40. Millie Harris was awarded the Peter Young Quaich for Youth for her portrayal of Albertine’s sister, Madeleine.
Norma Neal won Best Actress as Marjorie in ‘The Ghost You Can See’ by Scarborough writer Sue Wilding. The production also won Most Effective Set. Sedgefield Players Youth Section, known as SPYS, won the Endeavour Award for ‘I Never Saw Another Butterfly’, a moving evocation of life for children in the Jewish ghetto of Terezin during World War II. Lucy Atkinson as Raja was the first recipient this year of a Simon Whiteley Memorial Award for performers under the age of 21.
The second went to 12 year old Hugh Stanway in Cresta Amateur Dramatic Society’s ‘9.15’. Written and directed by Sue Wilding, the Scarborough group’s production was also awarded Best Actor and Best Supporting Actor for David Irwin as Neville and Tim Tubbs, his prison psychologist. The team received the Mayor’s Award for Runner Up to Best Production, portraying a group of office workers caught up in an incident which affected all their lives.
Bananadrama, another Scarborough team, won the Technical Award for ‘A Bicycle Made For Two’, written and directed by group member Shari Gledhill. In another original piece, ‘Echoes’ by George Collings of Nunthorpe Players, Norma Timney won the Cameo Award for a brief but telling portrayal of the mother. The Festival enjoyed a total of six pieces of new writing, recognised by the Ruby Award for Originality, specially selected to celebrate 40 years of Sedgefield Drama Festival. First winner, Sue Wilding of Cresta ADS, also a very talented actress and director, was delighted to receive the award.
Adjudicator Ian Sarginson, on his second visit to Sedgefield, was impressed by the wealth of original material, the high standard of productions, the efficiency of organisation and technical support plus the friendly, festive atmosphere evident throughout the week.
The Night Before Christmas-Best Production, Audience Award, Ensemble Award, Best 30 Seconds, Best Director (Thomas Guest)
Albertine in Five Times-Adjudicator’s Award, Costume Award, Best Supporting Actress (Liz Flanagan), Youth Award (Millie Harris)
The Ghost You Can See-Best Set, Best Actress (Norma Neal)
SPYS–'I Never Saw Another Butterfly'–Endeavour Award, Best performer under 21 (Lucy Atkinson)
Cresta Amateur Dramatic Society ‘9.15’-Runner-up Award, Best performer under 21 (Hugh Stanway), Best Actor (David Irwin), Best Supporting Actor (Tim Tubbs), Ruby Award for Originality Sue Wilding
Bananadrama-A Bicycle Made for Two'-Technical Award
Nunthorpe Players 'Echoes'-Cameo Award (Norma Timney)