Tears and laughter as the Little Theatre steps into summer

The cast of Our Town at Sheringham Little Theatre. 

The cast of Our Town at Sheringham Little Theatre. - Credit: Mark Benfield

Summer is a little different – but just as powerful and entertaining - at Sheringham Little Theatre this year, explains director Debbie Thompson in her latest column.

There have been tears at the Little Theatre in recent days – but not in a bad way.

Our production of Our Town has stirred the emotions as well as entertained, as all good drama should.

Its award-winning script was laced with loss and bereavement as well as the joy of birth and marriage, and a timely message to cherish what we have in the world while we are in it.

Our combined cast of professional and local amateur actors, ranged from 12 to 87 so it was a true cross section of a community.

They were expertly marshalled and inspired by top director Marcus Romer, in a moving production about everyday people’s highs and lows on their journey through life.

Sheringham Little Theatre is one of the Norfolk venues reopening.

Debbie Thompson, Sheringham Little Theatre director. - Credit: Contributed

So there were a lot of weepy faces at the end of the shows – partly because of the story’s message but also because we were all in the theatre after too long a break due to the pandemic.

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It was an emotional celebration of community life, by a community cast, enjoyed by a community audience reunited in the auditorium. So the tears were of real life happiness and relief as well as on stage sadness.

Next up, starting this week, is a world premiere of our summer farce – so now we are hoping for tears of laughter.

The Morning After cast having fun in rehearsal for their show at Sheringham Little Theatre. 

The Morning After cast having fun in rehearsal for their show at Sheringham Little Theatre. - Credit: Richard Batson

The Morning After (The Night Before) is written by and stars Little Theatre regular actor Ryan Starling. His brand new script aims to take all the essential ingredients of the farces we have loved for decades and give them a modern setting without some of the rather un-PC elements that date the classic “Whitehall” romps.

The action revolves around a young man’s “big night out” – involving alcohol, a stripper, his girlfriend and her prim mum – and the repercussions that follow his “bender”. The cast have been having great fun during rehearsals and we hope you enjoy the show running from August 18-25.

Our Town and the farce are the main elements of our summer programme this year, as we continue to deal with our own “hangover” from Covid.

The restrictions caused uncertainty when it came to planning what we could stage safely, and economically, during this year’s holiday season.

We were sad to reduce our normal offer of a full “rep” season with its mix of comedies, thrillers and music - but are delighted to put together two new and powerful productions which we hope will entertain and enthral our audiences. And when it comes to next year we envisage being able to return to a fuller season.

The cast of Hits of the Rat Pack which is coming to Sheringham Little Theatre,

The cast of Hits of the Rat Pack which is coming to Sheringham Little Theatre, from left, Harry Williams, Josh Marlow and Charlie Randall. - Credit: Supplied by SLT

There is still music to be enjoyed this year with a short season of one-night shows featuring classics and show songs from Hayley Moss and Benjamin Lake (August 27) and tributes to Barbra Streisand (August 28) and the Rat Pack (September 3).

And even though the 1940s weekend is downscaled this year we are again hosting our popular 1940s singalong on September 17-18.

So, as Dame Vera sang, the blues skies are driving the dark clouds far away meaning we are enjoying sunnier times at the theatre, and looking forward to meeting you again soon. More information and show details at www.sheringhamlittletheatre.com.