BARROW AUDIENCE SPELLBOUND BY THEATRE GROUP
Professional theatre came to Barrow in October, and Barrow seemed to like the idea. About a hundred people formed an attentive
audience for 'The Stars Look Down' and judging by the enthusiastic comments, we'll be booking more shows from Centre Stage. With
advance tickets costing only £3.50 and £4.00, it would be hard for anyone to complain it was too expensive. This reflects the generous
subsidy provided by the Centre Stage Scheme.
The NTC Touring Theatre Company built a dramatic set on the floor of Humphrey Perkins
High School. Their actors numbered six but with huge skill and imagination, they
portrayed a cast of eleven characters and the sense of a whole mining community. The pit
men, with their thick Northumberland accents, caps and heavy boots, changed in a
flash to the refined members of the Barrass family. Using minimal props, and token
changes of attire, this company had the audience spell-bound. Clever use of sound
and lighting had us there in the pit or in the court room, battling with Davie for justice.
The Centre Stage scheme brings professional live touring to village and community venues
in Leicestershire and Rutland in all the performing arts: drama, dance, a wide range
of music, opera and music theatre, cabaret, story-telling and poetry. Last year,
performances reached about 7,000 people in local venues. Several people in the Barrow
audience had travelled from other parts of the county, so impressed had they been with their
own community's show. One lady from Hinckley said "I used to work for a touring
theatre company so I know how hard the actors work. Somehow, it's quite magical
when you can experience the professionalism and dedication of companies like NTC in a
small community setting". Val Gillings, who is a keen theatre-goer and a member of the
Events Committee who organised the show, said "I've lived in Barrow for over 30 years. I
can't remember when we last had anything like this. It was wonderful. It really enriches
village life. We simply must put in our bid for other shows on the Centre Stage programme."
Well we will, so WATCH THIS SPACE. If you are interested in joining the Events team or if
you have a view point about what we should be booking, give me a ring on 01509 412063.