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Loss of members proving to be a big drama for Penhill Players
PANTOMIME organisers are calling on new heroes to take centre stage in order to preserve the future of a community club which has lost nearly 30 members in the last two years.
Penhill Players is a drama group based out of St Peter’s Church, in Penhill Drive, which has worked to serve the community with opportunities to act, write scripts, design costumes, build scenery and direct productions for the best part of 25 years.
The volunteer organisation is asking for people of all ages to come forward and get involved though, with large gaps in the committee and scenery building team after a mass exodus caused by new jobs, changes in interest and the bedroom tax, which has forced some away from Penhill.
Eddie Hawkins, 53, of Penhill Drive, who is the chairman of the Penhill Players, said: “It’s a lot for a volunteer organisation to lose. It has a big impact because as more adults leave, if there is no influx of new members, those left at the club have to take the brunt.
“We need more members in to make up the rest of the committee, which only has four members currently, and take up various roles both on-stage and off of it.”
One of those who have borne the brunt of work when numbers are down is Eddie himself, who will undergo major knee surgery next month, soon after auditions commence to fill parts for their winter pantomime, Snow White and the Eight Dwarves.
Anyone looking to get involved in the acting side of the play can attend auditions, which start on September 8 at St Peter’s between 2pm and 4pm.
The club, which is currently made up of 10 adults and 14 children following a recruitment drive last weekend, has a commitment to helping children with low confidence, minor disabilities or those from disadvantaged backgrounds.
“We aim to bring the children’s hidden confidence to the front. If they can show off their talents to their parents in auditions to start with, we hope they can grow to show a public audience who they are,” said Eddie.
“We have also had children who have suffered from stammers or not enough confidence in their abilities. We want them to believe in themselves and show their excitement for something like acting.”
The Penhill Players Snow White production will be performed in the first week of January, and anyone wishing to get involved can contact Eddie on 01793 323 474.
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