Glossop Operatic and Dramatic Society

A Chorus Line (2006)

Chorus line (n):
a substantial group of dancers who together perform synchronized routines, usually in musical theatre. Sometimes, singing is also performed. Chorus line dancers in Broadway musicals and revues were called Ponies, but are now called Gypsies.

A Chorus Line was a bitter-sweet celebration of those unsung heroes of the Musical Theatre, the chorus dancers: valiant, over-dedicated, underpaid and highly trained troopers who back up the stars and often make them look more talented than they are. 

Rehearsal: "Again: 5-6-7-8"

 We produced the show in the Society's 30th year, from 22 to 27 May 2007, and took the audience on a heart-rendering, nail-biting roller-coaster of emotions as a group of potential performers were put through a vigorous series of dance numbers while the director, Zach, abruptly reduces the initially large number of hopefuls to the sixteen from which he will make his final choice.

Instead of making them read a short audition, Zach asked each hopeful to give a personal history of how they came to be in show business, their hopes and inspirations - and what they would do if they couldn't dance.

 

Rehearsal: setting Hat Dance

 As they exposed their souls in words, dance and some terrific songs we intruded into their pasts and personalities.

By the end of the auditions the audience had been drawn into identifying with each performer and why they had endured a life filled with rejection, injury, pain and heartache to be involved with what is, to them, the glamorous world of the musical theatre.

 

 

Eventually Zach made his decision and the audition was suddenly over.

 

We jumped forward in time to see the artistes fulfilling the dream they were so desperate to achieve: performing in costume in a major production on a major stage. There they were - that usually unappreciated essential of every successful show - A Chorus Line.

 

Cast    
Audition Director Zach Ken Redfern
Dance Captain Lucy Mel Bowler
The Line  Al Andy Gibson 
  Bebe Ashley Conaghan 
  Cassie Tracey Biles 
  Connie Faye Allison 
  Diana Catherine Baddeley 
  Don Jon Clay 
  Gregory Scott Lees 
  Judy Gemma Glencross
  Kristine Majella Moriarty 
  Maggie Jeni Caldwell
  Mark James Done 
  Mike Tom Stockton 
  Paul Adam McDiarmid 
  Ritchie Marc Joseph 
  Sheila Kate Martin 
  Tom Matthew Cox 
  Val Keeley Horrocks 
Other auditionees: Rebecca Fay Sarah Foley 
  Abigail Heneghan Emily Law 
  Amelia Martin Jean Mosley 
  Ann Parrans Deborah Peebles 
  Julie Perry Norman Shaw 
  Sam Tracey Chloe Walker 
  Charlotte Walster  
     
Production Team Director Ken Redfern 
  Choreographer Mel Bowler
  Musical Director James Mycroft
  Asst.Musical Director Christine Fox
  Stage Manager Paul Mosley
  Production & ASM David Swanston
  Lighting Andrew Veitch & Robert Vane
  Sound Ian Gregory
  Front of House Chris Redfern & Joan Bowler
  Programme Paul Mosley
     
Musical Numbers I Hope I Get It Company
  I Can Do That Mike
 

At the Ballet

Sheila, Bebe & Maggie
  Sing Kristine, Al & Line
  Hello Twelve Mark, Connie & Line
  Nothing Diana
  Mother Don, Judy & Line
  Dance 10, Looks 3 Val
  Music and the Mirror Cassie
  One Company
  What I Did For Love Diana & Line
  Bows Company
     

We got from the first rehearsal to the opening night in just twelve weeks.  For any group that hasn't done the show that may not seem remarkable: after all, there's just the one Act.  But those who know it will realise that those 12 weeks were hectic (even fraught!) - but always fun (well, nearly always).

Lib, dance and song were so inter-related and involved so many of the main cast that all disciplines had to be set and rehearsed at the same time, and needed most of the Line to be called most of the time.

But it was a great audience experience - despite or because of the subject matter, for which the audience was warned:

This show contains Strong Language

A Chorus Line was conceived and originally directed and choreographed by Michael Bennet
Books by James Kirkwood and Nicholas Dante
Music by Marvin Hamlisch, Lyrics by Edwards Kleban
Co-Choreographed by Bob Avian
Original Broadway Production produced by the New York Shakespeare Festival, Joseph Papp, Producer, in association with Plum Productions, Inc.

GODS, a non-professional company, will produce A Chorus Line from 22nd-27th May 2006 in the Victoria Hall, Talbot Street, Glossop
by arrangement with MusicScope and Stage Musicals Limited of New York
Director - Ken Redfern, Choreography - Mel Bowler, Musical Direction - James Mycroft and Christine Fox
Production managed by David Swanston
Tickets available from Bay Tree Books, 96 High Street West, Glossop (Tel: 01457 862512)

updated DPS 19/04/08