2000 - 2009

The noble 'noughties', the first decade of the new millennium, is the sixth decade of the Wyong Drama group. The list below contains all of the Group's productions from 2000 - 2009.

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BEDFULL OF FOREIGNERS

By Dave Freeman

Directed by Millie Sampson

Performed November 2006

Bedfull of Foreigners was presented in November 2006, and another production from our prolific director, Millie Sampson.

The Cast of Bedfull of Foreigners -1
The Cast of Bedfull of Foreigners -1

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The Cast of Bedfull of Foreigners -2
The Cast of Bedfull of Foreigners -2

From L, John Czerniecki, Hagen Heinrich, Rose Cooper, Jenny Sharrock, Rueben Sennett, Debbie Clark and Duncan Mitchell fill a bed.

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The Action of Bedfull of Foreigners - 5
The Action of Bedfull of Foreigners - 5

Rose Cooper reveals her (many) talents.

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The Cast of Bedfull of Foreigners -1
The Cast of Bedfull of Foreigners -1

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The cast and action of Bedfull of Foreigners. Use the arrows to browse through the photos . Click the images to view them full-size.

There is a character schema available in our archives to assist future directors. If you would like to access it, please contact us.

Millie Sampson

DIRECTED BY:

CAST:

SIMONE - Jenny Sharrock
BRENDA PARKER - Debbi Clarke
STANLEY PARKER - Duncan Mitchell
CLAUDE PHILBY - John Czernecki
HELGA PHILBY - Rose Cooper
HEINZE - Reuben Sennet
KARAK - Hagen Heinrich

SOULMATES

By David Williamson

Directed by Darlene Cole

Performed April 2007

Soulmates was directed by Darlene Cole, fresh from her recent successes with the one-act plays Mother & Son: The Last Straw and The Donoghue Sisters.

The dates for Soulmates were:

  • Hall Setup - weekends April 7-8 & 14-15

  • Opening Night: Thursday 19th April 2007, then Friday 20th, Saturday 21st April.

  • Second week: Thursday 26th, Friday 27th and closing on Saturday 28th April 2007.  Both Matinees (i.e. 2pm on Saturday 21 and 28 April) were run.

The Cast of Soulmates
The Cast of Soulmates

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Soulmates Director - Darlene Cole
Soulmates Director - Darlene Cole

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The Cast of Soulmates
The Cast of Soulmates

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The Cast and Crew of Soulmates. Use the arrows to browse through the photos . Click the images to view them full-size.

Synopsis

Katie Best, ex-pat Australian ‘Chick Lit’ Queen, writes best selling novels filled with urbanely glamorous people and their elaborate love lives. When Katie receives a damning review from Danny (who despises her clichéd “soap operas on the page”) she vows to take revenge. The result is an hilarious mix of intrigue, jealousy and romance... just like one of Katie’s own novels!

David Williamson applies his merciless humour to the literary world in a play about the slippery business of books, writers and the readers who love them.

Darlene Cole

DIRECTED BY:

CAST:

HEATHER - Christine Vale
DANNY - John Czerniecki
KATIE - Ruth Jordon
GORDON - Laci Weidlich
FIONA  - Cathy Stone
GREG - Peter Santangelo
MAX - Graham Vale

 
 

COMMUNICATING DOORS

By Alan Ayckbourn

Directed by Christine Vale

Performed August 2007

At the March meeting, Christine Vale put her hand up to direct the August production!  The play was Communicating Doors by Alan Ayckbourn.  Christine has had a wealth of experience acting, but this will be her directorial debut.

 

Christine told us that she had directed children before, in school productions, but never adults.  We assured her that the children would have been better behaved.  Seriously, though, we welcome Christine to the job, and know she will be more than up to the task of presenting a fine show.

The Cast and Crew of Communicating Doors
The Cast and Crew of Communicating Doors

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The Cast of Communicating Doors
The Cast of Communicating Doors

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The Director - Christine Vale
The Director - Christine Vale

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The Cast and Crew of Communicating Doors
The Cast and Crew of Communicating Doors

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The Cast and Crew of  Communicating Doors. Use the arrows to browse through the photos . Click the images to view them full-size.

The play's setting is in the same hotel room. However the dates of the plot are not only the present day, but also twenty years into the past, and twenty years into the future.  It's an intriguing story of a sinister murderer, who profits from his crime.  When one of his victims discovers an unusual feature of her hotel room communicating door she uses it to jump from one era to another, but not with complete success.  Nevertheless, she tries to use her newly found ability for the forces of good and to attempt to overcome the murderer.

The play could be described as a black comedy-thriller, and will satisfy fans of both comedy and serious drama.  It is an excellent example of Ayckbourn's work.

The dates for Communicating Doors were:

  • Hall Setup - weekends August 4-5 & 11-12

  • Opening Night: Thursday 16 August 2007, then 17th, 18th, 23rd, 24th August, closing on Saturday 25 August 2007.

Synopsis

Communicating Doors is very cleverly contrived. The premise is ridiculous, but hey, it's theatre -- anything goes. The communicating doors of the title are in a hotel room, and they allow some of the characters to travel through time, returning to the same hotel room twenty years earlier. But not everybody gets transported, and not everybody gets transported to the same era. Confusing ? Perhaps, but Ayckbourn actually manages to lay it out fairly clearly, using what confusion there is to best comedic advantage.

The play starts in 2014, in a suite at the Regal Hotel. Julian has procured a prostitute for seventy year-old Reece Welles. The girl, Phoebe, is a dominatrix (the regular girl was unavailable) who goes by the name Poopay Daysir. As it turns out, Reece doesn't want her for what she usually gets paid for -- that would: "Finish me off altogether, in my condition", he observes. Instead he wants her to witness a confession and then deliver it to trusted hands.

Reece has been very successful in life, along with his business partner Julian, but it has come at a high cost. Two of Reece's wives were killed by Julian along the way, among other terrible deeds.
 

Julian gets wise to the fact that there is a confession revealing his crimes and that Poopay knows about them, and naturally he plans to get rid of her as well. She escapes, sort of, through the infamous communicating doors, which toss her back twenty years into the same room in 1994. Ruella, Reece's first wife is there: as it happens, it's the night she is meant to die at Julian's hands.

It takes a while for the two to figure out that there has been some time-travel involved, but Ruella comes to believe Poopay. Her own trip through the communicating doors -- sending her to Reece's 1974 honeymoon night with his first wife, Jessica -- help convince her.
 

Julian, meanwhile is still after Poopay -- as well as Ruella, of course. There's some back and forth, and lots of amusing confusion and some decent suspense along the way. All's well that ends well, and Ayckbourn does knot things up very nicely.
 

This is a play of strong women; the men are largely patsies. The premise is completely illogical and non-sensical, and yet Ayckbourn fashions a convincing and even touching entertainment out of it. The situations unfold very nicely, and the comedy is robust throughout. It reads well, and if well-staged must be absolutely hilarious. Recommended!

DIRECTED BY:

Christine Vale

CAST:

JULIAN GOODMAN – Andrew Thomson
POOPAY
& PHOEBE – Leanna McNeil
REECE WELLES – Laszlo Weidlich
RUELLA WELLES – Pam Campbell
HAROLD PALMER – Mike Jeffries
JESSICA WELLES - Rosemary Parsons

 

TheatreFest

2007

Performed 8th September 2007

TheatreFest 2007 - Best Production: The Cagebirds
TheatreFest 2007 - Best Production: The Cagebirds

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TheatreFest 2007 - Best Director: Millie Sampson
TheatreFest 2007 - Best Director: Millie Sampson

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TheatreFest 2007 - Best Production: The Cagebirds
TheatreFest 2007 - Best Production: The Cagebirds

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Shots of Some Award Winners from TheatreFest 2007. Use the arrows to browse through the photos. Click the images to view them full-size.

This was the fourth year of annual festivals - following on from the inaugural festival which we held in 1998.  This year the festival was held over 1 day (Saturday 8 September) and featured eight entries.  Our adjudicator was Lyn Pierse who was back again having also adjudicated our first TheatreFest of 1998.

Lyn Pierse

ADJUDICATOR:

Awards:

BEST MALE ACTOR: Duncan Mitchell

BEST FEMALE ACTORPollyana Forshaw

BEST MALE ACTOR IN A SUPPORTING ROLE: Paul Ractliffe

BEST FEMALE ACTOR IN A SUPPORTING ROLE Sierra Phillips

BEST ENSEMBLE PERFORMANCE:  A Dog's Life

BEST PRODUCTION: The Cagebirds

BEST PRODUCTION RUNNER-UP: The Dumb Waiter

BEST DIRECTION: Pauline Wright

BEST COSTUMES: Collette's Feast

BEST UNPUBLISHED PLAYWhat's the Matter with Dulcie

BEST SET: Collette's Feast

ADJUDICATOR'S SPECIAL AWARDMax Paul & Simone Dighton

JOHN AXFORD MEMORIAL AWARD: Joan Dalgleish

APEX 40 AWARD: Julie Young

WOOPS AWARD: An Act of Flood

TheatreFest 2007

WHAT'S FOR PUDDING (2007)

By David Tristram

Directed by Ron Baker

Performed 8th September 2007

Whats_for_Pudding_2007_Cast_LoRes.jpg

The Cast of What's For Pudding (2007 Production) as presented for the 2007 TheatreFest. Paul Karton, Rose Cooper, Paul Ractliffe, Nikki De Vries & Duncan Mitchell. Duncan Mitchell won Best Actor and Paul Ractliffe won Best Supporting Actor.

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Ron Baker

DIRECTED BY:

CAST:

MARY - Nicki de Vries
JACK - Duncan Mitchell
MAUREEN - Rose Cooper
TED - Paul Karton
DENNIS - Paul Ractliffe

TheatreFest 2007

THE DUMB WAITER

By Harold Pinter

Directed by Pam Campbell

Performed 8th September 2007

Pam Campbell

DIRECTED BY:

CAST:

BEN - Laszlo Weidlich
GUS - Howard Oxley

 
 
 

THE CAGEBIRDS

TheatreFest 2007

By David Campton

Directed by Millie Sampson

Performed 8th September 2007

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The Cast of Cagebirds and Their Director

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DIRECTED BY:

Millie Sampson

CAST:

“WILD ONE” - Pollyanna Forshaw
GOSSIP - Julie Bailey
GAZER - Cathy De Vries
GLOOM - Jeanette McCurry
GUZZLE - Prima Carpenter
TWITTING - Helen Schumann
THUMP - Pam Campbell
MISTRESS (NURSE) - Leanna McNeil

 

PASS THE BUTLER

By Eric Idle

Directed by Peter Deane

Performed November 2007

The November 2007 Production was Pass the Butler a play written by that irreverent member of Monty Python  ('nudge, nudge, wink wink')  Eric Idle. It was directed by Peter Deane.

A night at this play is not to be forgotten and not to be missed.  It is not often performed in Australia, so don't miss the opportunity this time around!

The first cast meeting was on Sunday 29 July at 2pm in the Green Room.  At this meeting, rehearsal and performance dates were decided.  At the September meeting the dates were revised. 

  • Hall Setup - weekends October 20-21, October 27-28 & November 3-4.  Only the first weekend was planned to build the set, and the next two were scheduled to make minor adjustments and modifications.  The cast would have the luxury of nearly three weeks of rehearsals on the actual set.

The cast and action of Pass The Butler. Click on the thumbnails to browse through the photos . Click the images to view them full-size. For more photos, contact us.

Auditions were open public auditions, using elements of the play dictated by the presence of potential cast members.  There were two private auditions held because these people could not make it in on the audition dates.  These two private auditionees were actually successful in obtaining roles, incidentally.

There were twelve auditionees for nine roles. Luckily, only three people had to be disappointed.

Synopsis

Inspector, you are right off the track. Sir Robert could never have been Nigel's mother. How could he? In 1956 his political career was in full bud. He could never have become pregnant. It would have looked ridiculous for a male junior minister. Even in the Liberal party.

Eric Idle's first stage play, Pass the Butler, is a triumph of outrageous logic and death-defying ingenuity, as might be expected from the author of Hello Sailor and The Rutland Dirty Weekend Book.

As the action of the play moves forward inexorably from breakfast to sherry and what follows, it becomes rapidly clear that all within the country home of Sir Robert Charles, Minister of Defence, is not as it seems.  And not only is Sir Robert no longer an active force in politics, his inactivity has become a well-nigh insoluble problem.  Furthermore, the relationship between his daughter Annabelle and the butler, Butler, is mysterious to say the least.  And after what follows sherry it seems that life in the Charles household will never be the same again.  By the time the denouement is reached hardly any of our worst suspicions have been left unconfirmed.

Pass the Butler is a very funny, savagely elegant play, which opened in London in January 1982.  It was first presented by the Cambridge Theatre Company Ltd (by arrangement with Michael White) at the Arts Centre, University of Warwick, Coventry, on 3 November 1981 and in London by Michael White (by arrangement with the Cambridge Theatre Company Ltd) at the Globe Theatre on 26 January 1982.

Note: We have many more photos, rehearsal schedules, audition material, director and author notes (etc.) for this production. It may be helpful to future directors or historians. If you are interested, please contact us for access.

DIRECTED BY:

Peter Deane

CAST:

HUGO - Brendon Flynn
ANNABELLE - Renee Campbell
NIGEL - Damien Van der Meulen
KITTY - Brenda Baker
BUTLER - Duncan Mitchell
LADY CHARLES - Joan Dalgleish
HARRIS - John Czerniecki
RONNIE - Laszlo Weidlich
SLATER - Barry Sampson

 

MAGGIE'S GETTING MARRIED

By Norm Foster

Directed by Ron Baker

Performed April 2008

This was the April production for 2008, and opened on Thursday 17 April.  It played Thursday, Friday and Saturday at 8pm and a Saturday Matinee at 2pm for 2 weeks.  The show was directed by Ron Baker.

The show dates were Thursday 8pm (on 17 & 24 April), Friday 8pm (on 18 & 25 April), Saturday 2pm & 8pm ( on 19 & 26 April).

The Cast and Crew of Maggie's Getting Married
The Cast and Crew of Maggie's Getting Married

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The Cast of Maggie's Getting Married
The Cast of Maggie's Getting Married

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The Director - Ron Baker
The Director - Ron Baker

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The Cast and Crew of Maggie's Getting Married
The Cast and Crew of Maggie's Getting Married

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The cast  and crew of Maggie's Getting Married. Use the arrows to browse through the photos . Click the images to view them full-size.

“Outdoor weddings can be charming, but no one wants to watch a bride clamber into a portaloo dragging 12 metres of satin and lace.”


This touching comedy follows the pitfalls encountered by the Duncan family on the eve of daughter Maggie's (Ruth Jordon) wedding.  Maggie's father Tom (Howard Oxley) is trying to find a subtle way to question his daughter about her choice of mate, a choice he is not completely in agreement with.

It appears to be a picture perfectly organised wedding day until Maggie's fun loving sister Wanda (Debbi Clarke) arrives, and after meeting Russell (Duncan Mitchell) announces blithely that she is almost certain that she had a million to one chance weekend fling with him, at a recent company convention she attended.

If you think the wedding is doomed - you have never seen her desperately determined mother Cass (Julie Bailey) fling herself into action. Within the crisis Tom, feeling the fire is diminishing in their marriage, sets about trying to rekindle the fire.

Wanda's boyfriend, Axel (John Czerniecki), adds a whole new dimension to his next acting role as Peter Pan.

DIRECTED BY:

Ron Baker

CAST:

MAGGIE DUNCAN - Ruth Jordon
WANDA DUNCAN - Debbi Clarke
CASS DUNCAN - Julie Bailey
TOM DUNCAN - Howard Oxley
AXEL WILKIE - John Czerniecki
RUSSELL MACMILLAN - Duncan Mitchell

 

Central Coast TheatreFest

2008

Performed 20th - 22nd June 2008

The TheatreFest was held on Saturday 21 June 2008 and the presentation ceremony on Sunday 22 June.  This year we also had some excellent entertainment on the preceding Friday night by junior members and junior affiliates from both the XtrAct! Drama Academy and St Peter's College Tuggerah.

Shots from the Central Coast TheatreFest 2008. Click the images to view them full-size.

Millie Sampson directed not one but two one-act plays: A Night Out by Frank Vickery and  Repent At Leisure by Cherry Vooght.   She carried out auditions on 21 April and announced her cast at the ordinary group meeting on Tuesday 6 May 2008.

A High Standard

The standard of entries this year was incredibly high.  Normally when you attend a theatre festival, there are one or two productions that you just wish would finish so you can get to see something else.  This DID NOT happen this year.  Woy Woy Little Theatre started proceedings with The Last Munro and set the bar high.  This bar was then the standard that all the plays seemed to reach right up until the final performance from WDG of A Night Out.

There really didn't seem to be a single show-stopper, but again with no dogs, it would have been very difficult for this year's adjudicator Carl Caulfield to settle on the award winners.  Nevertheless he did, and we are pleased to announce this year's winners:

Carl Caulfield

ADJUDICATOR:

Awards:

BEST MALE ACTOR: Laszlo Weidlich  (A Night Out)

BEST FEMALE ACTOR Doreen Wolfgang (Flowers for Mrs Hopkins)

BEST MALE ACTOR IN A SUPPORTING ROLE: Jerard Proust (A Night Out)

BEST FEMALE ACTOR IN A SUPPORTING ROLE: Julie Bailey (A Night Out)

BEST ENSEMBLE PERFORMANCE: Last Tango in Little Grimley (Elanora Players)

BEST PRODUCTION: Merge (U-Turn Productions)

BEST PRODUCTION RUNNER-UP: Flowers for Mrs Hopkins (Romulus Players)

BEST DIRECTION: Millie Sampson (Repent at Leisure)

BEST SET: Repent at Leisure

BEST COSTUMES: Recognition scene from Anastasia

BEST UNPUBLISHED PLAY: White Lies by Peter King

ADJUDICATOR'S SPECIAL AWARDAlexander Gibbs as author of Butterfly Lounge

JOHN AXFORD MEMORIAL AWARD: St Peter's Christian College for MOH (Friday Night)

APEX 40 AWARD: Kathleen Warren (Dowager Empress in Anastasia)

WOOPS AWARD: (Nobody woopsed - so not awarded!)

Note: For archived resources, such as the info kit and rules provided to directors for this festival, please contact us.

Central Coast TheatreFest 2008

REPENT AT LEISURE

By Cherry Vooght

Directed by Millie Sampson

Performed 21st June 2008

DIRECTED BY:

Millie Sampson

CAST:

MRS BAXTER - Ros Ellis
EDITH - Cathy De Vries
AUNT MARGARET - Jeanette McCurry
AUNT ALICE  - Wendy Potter
GRANDMA - Pat Trott
LADY MUNDAY - Helen Schumann
ROSE - Pam Campbell

Central Coast TheatreFest 2008

A NIGHT OUT

By Frank Vickery

Directed by Millie Sampson

Performed 21st June 2006

DIRECTED BY:

Millie Sampson

CAST:

MAM - Julie Bailey
DAD - Laszlo Weidlich
DOREEN - Kayla Strada
ERIC - Jerard Proust

LOOT

A dark comedy which twists and bites

By Joe Orton

Directed by Hagen Heinrich

Performed August 2008

The cast and crew of Loot. Use the arrows to browse through the photos. Click the images to view them full-size.

Loot is a black farce written in 1965.  Basically, a parody of a stock detective play, Loot presents a pair of young male lovers who have robbed a bank and hide the loot in the coffin of one boy's mother - who had been murdered by her nurse who plans to marry the father before disposing of him in turn.

A bent detective, posing as a Water Board official, completes the main cast.  Contrasts between the manner of the dialogue (often quite formally stylised) and the substance of the situation, opportunities for hilarious business with the body to prevent discovery, and other farcical devices keep the laughs coming. 

There were only six performances of Loot; Friday 8pm (on 15 & 22 August), Saturday 2pm & 8pm (on 16 & 23 August). Tickets for the matinees were $14 and tickets for the nights were $17.

DIRECTED BY:

Hagen Heinrich

CAST:

MCLEAVY - John Czerniecki
FAY - Denni Mannile
HAL - Paul Karton
DENNIS - Damien van der Meulen
TRUSCOTT - Marc Calwell
MEADOWS - Duncan Mitchell

TWO INTO ONE

By Ray Cooney

Directed by Millie Sampson

Performed November 2008

For our November production, the Group presented another farce by Ray Cooney, Two into One, directed by Millie Sampson. It opened in early November.

The performance dates were Thursday 8pm (o