Farragut North AUDITIONS 29/30 June

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15 June 2014
Last Sunday was the Open Rehearsal for Six Dance Lessons in Six Weeks and what a treat for those who managed to get along to that gig. This is indeed a special production with live research having been undertaken in Buenos Aires by Costumier Extraordinaire, Tony Tartaro. Read later on about his time in their celebrated Tango bars!  So we're all looking forward to this show which opens next Thursday.  Chookas to Alan Burrows, his cast and crew for a great run.

Following on behind will be our September production of Farragut North, directed by Peter Newling, President of Williamstown Little Theatre. Auditions will be in a fortnight, see details below.

Welcome to a new version, yet with much the same format, of Cues & News, this time using MailChimp as opposed to Vertical Response.  The Editor is hoping that this will be an easier format to negotiate and Secretary, Shirley Sydenham is hoping their database management will be better as well.  Let's see how we go?

Six Dance Lessons in Six Weeks

Tony Tartaro our talented Costume Designer and Realiser has returned for Six Dance Lessons in Six Weeks, another WLT production to add to his illustrious credits. Many will remember Tony's brilliant costumes in 33 Variations and the more recent A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum.

Tony reports that costuming for this show is going well and there's been some fun at fittings with the range of costumes the characters will be wearing.

Tony has recently returned from a wonderful, month-long odyssey around South America which took in Buenos Aires, the home of the tango. He took a tango
lesson at one of the celebrated Tango Bars (telling us that one hour does not tango dancer make!) and got to see a fabulous performance of tango with spectacular choreography, music, dancers, singers and costumes. The pictures here are all taken at the venue, The Café de los Angelitos.
He also visited "La Boca", a very colourful district originally settled by Italian immigrants which is where the tango originated in the days when it was the red light district of Buenos Aires and the girls used to dance with their clients as a sort of foreplay.

Tony would like to boast that this is the effort and expense he will go to in his research for projects, but the reality is that this trip was planned last year and just happened to coincide with this production.

While in Rio de Janiero he also saw some of the extraordinary costumes worn by dancers at Mardi Gras.  He didn't realise you could get so many feathers and sequins onto one body!

And finally, Tony has kindly shared with us some of his exciting designs for costumes for Six Dance Lessons in Six Weeks.  Here is a selection.

Open Rehearsal

Apparently a fairly large attendance for an Open Rehearsal and with some new faces to welcome.  Reports suggest we're in for a fabulous show!  Here are a few performance images to whet your appetite, with an impressive set in the background.  A glimpse too of the audience awaiting the performance. Production Coordinator, Bob Harsley took his "friend" who has no real live theatre experience and who loved it and now wants to see the full show - that's impressive!

Director, Alan Burrows said; "Open rehearsal, while sometimes daunting for the actors proved a worthwhile exercise.  Managed to run Act I in its entirety with few prompts and books well and truly down, chore completed and pretty well executed, I think Fred and Ginger did us proud!!"

Audition dates:

Sunday 29 June, from 7:30pm
Monday 30 June, from 7:30pm

Auditions by appointment only. For a copy of the script, or to book an audition, email the director via


When you attend any WLT audition, please bring with you an Audition Form already filled in, and a non-returnable PHOTOGRAPH  (please write your name on back of the photo in case it gets separated from the form)

Download the Audition Form HERE

For Pete's Sake

Hi everyone, and welcome to winter. It took a while to get here, but I get the feeling it’ll be hanging around for a while now!

You may recall that in the January edition of this esteemed publication, I somewhat bravely shared my new year’s resolutions. It seems appropriate then, that in the June edition, I provide you with a report card as to how I’m tracking against my stated goals. So, here goes nothing…

Resolution #1 - Organise my WLT subscription
Mid year status – Done! Tick! Check! And I must say, we got excellent seats this year. It pays to get in early!!
Resolution #2 - Organise my MTC and Redstitch subscriptions
Mid year status – Done! Tick! Check! And we successfully avoided Ghosts!
Resolution #3 - Cast and rehearse As Bees In Honey Drown for Brighton Theatre Company
Mid year status – Complete! And it was lovely to work with some WLT regulars over there, in Steve Shinkfield, Janine Evans and Gaetano Santo
Resolution #4 - Write a President’s Report for the WLT AGM
Mid year status – Done for another year. And we were quorate. If you missed it, you can read the AGM reports under the About Us section of our rather gorgeous website.
Resolution #5 - Cast and rehearse Farragut North for WLT
Mid year status – Auditions are coming up in late June – and I must say I’m thrilled with the quality (and quantity) of people who have booked an audition so far! Getting a bit excited now!! Pop down to the Open Rehearsal on Sunday 10 August and see how we’re getting on.
Resolution #6 - Go and see at least one show at another community theatre company.
Mid year status – Done! Tick! Check! Saw Heroes over at Peridot recently. Great stuff!!
Resolution #7 - Go and see at least one show at a theatre company I’ve never been to before
Mid year status – Erm….. There’s still 6 months to go, isn’t there?
Resolution #8 - Go and see one form of performance art I’ve never seen before, eg an opera or a ballet
Mid year status – Oh dear. The second half of the year is certainly going to be full of new things, isn’t it…….
Resolution #9 – Attend one of Neil’s techie workshops – to see how it all works
Mid year status – Sorry Neil. Can you book me in for later in the year? (Gonna be a busy second half of the year, huh?)
Resolution #10 - Do Front of House (FoH) at least once during every WLT production
Mid year status – Woohoo! One I can tick!! So far so good.
Resolution #11 - Attend WLT Committee meetings
Mid year status – Okay, I may have missed a couple due to work commitments. I see that as merely ensuring that the Vice Chair’s skills are being kept fresh.
Resolution #12 - Offer at least one role, in one of my productions, to someone who has never been on stage before 
Mid year status – Tick! Eric, who was in As Bees In Honey Drown made his stage debut during that show. He has since retired to Paynesville. I choose to believe these two events are not related.

I give myself 7.5 out of 12. That’s a pass, isn’t it? How are you going with yours?

See you in the foyer.


Proof Review 

This VDL Theatrecraft review republished with kind permission of the VDL.

Diary Dates

Six Dance Lessons in Six Weeks
by Richard Alfieri
Director: Alan Burrows

Season: 26 June to 12 July
Six Dance Lessons in Six Weeks
Bump out Tuesday 15 July, after work or as soon as you can get there.  Dinner provided
Farragut North
by Beau Willimon
Director: Peter Newling

Sunday 29 June from 7.30 pm
Monday 30 June from 7.30 pm

Open Rehearsal: Sunday 10 August  3.30 pm

Season: 4 - 20 September
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Members & Friends


Seen in foyers recently - Shirley Sydenham and Ellis Ebell - rather frequently actually. Remembering our fine production last year of Martin McDonagh's The Beauty Queen of Leenane, they’ve been trotting off to see Fortyfive Downstairs present a season of the Martin McDonagh’s The Leenane Trilogy; including the aforementioned play, plus A Skull in Connemara and The Lonesome West.

Shirley and Ellis were joined at The Beauty Queen of Leenane by Bevan Uren from the WLT Leenane cast. While
Gabriel Bergmoser also from the WLT production and Sandy Greene have sat through a back-to-back Sunday performance of all three plays.  Shirley and Ellis paced themselves with one show a week! Seems like they’ve responded favourably to these productions, albeit with comments about Leenane being a different interpretation to ours, which was equal, if not better! Maintaining their theatre hopping Shirley and Ellis were also seen at one of the previews for MTC’s The Speechmaker which they enjoyed.

Just noticed that Paula McDonald and George Tranter have also done the 3 in 1 sitting as well - troupers no doubt.


Former President, Treasurer, Director, Actor and much much more Amy Joseland (Grove Rogers) recently turned 93. All your friends at WLT send birthday greetings and good wishes. We hear that Amy is still very alert and continues to enjoy her half glass of red with her dinner each evening. Not so physically active these days, Amy is still staunchly following the Bombers and this apparently keeps her nicely feisty! Thanks to former President, Director and much much more Laurie Gellon for this update on Amy and here he is with Amy at WLT 60th Anniversary celebrations in 2006.


Last month we were telling you about Williamstown Musical Theatre Co's Gypsy with Barb Hughes playing Tessie Tura and Bob Harsley playing Pop. We also told you that WMTC had put a publicity embargo on images of Barb and her burlesque colleagues.  Well now we can reveal why with two images, approved and selected by Barb. They wanted to keep them as a surprise for audiences. They succeeded and we're still laughing at the wonderful character that Barb created - a triumph absolutely.


In recent months we've had something going on involving hospital stints for a few WLT-ites. Delighted to report that this particular trio are all back fighting fit and getting on with their lives. As we all know Facebook doesn't let very much slip under the radar and first cab off the rank was Keith Hutton (Morning Departure). In early April Keith took a tumble off his bike and ended up with a compound fracture of fibula, fracture of tibia and busted ankle, involving surgery and rehab - ouch! Then just a few days later WLT stalwart Ellis Ebell underwent some minor surgery involving a couple of days in hospital. Ellis and Keith started exchanging Facebook messages comparing their hospital food, with graphic descriptions and images to boot. Then in mid May Facebook lights up again with globe-trotting thespian and gourmand Sandy Green (Assistant Director, Gross Indecency) in hospital for some surgery. Within a day or so Sandy was up and about and enjoying her first post-op outing, foraging of course at some delightful eatery! Here are the three patients in their respective hospitals with Sandy's husband Ian Green being the ever-loving spouse. Great to know that they're all doing well after these experiences and nice that they could share them with each other and the rest of us!
Katherine Hawken, former Committee member and most recently seen in A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum gave birth on 4 June to this bonnie baby.  Katherine, Chisel and Bastian have welcomed little Storm Frederick to the family!  All of us at WLT send best wishes to Katherine and the family.

The Communications Group here at WLT are ever mindful of opportunities to improve how we engage with members and friends. We‘ve realised there should be a Contact Us section on the website, and there will be a bit of a tweak to add one in the future.  

If you need to make contact with me (Secretary, Shirley Sydenham), the best way is via email

I deal with the general emails that come in, such as  enquiries and membership, but if the communication is particular to someone’s area of responsibility, then I forward the email to them to deal with, for example, costume matters are forwarded to Barbara Hughes, items for Cues & News to Frank Page, and so on.

Any emails regarding bookings that are sent to are forwarded to David Dare our Ticket Secretary. David has immediate access to the booking system and can quickly address your enquiry. We limit such access to David to avoid double bookings and confusion.

Exchanging tickets: if you need to do this, it is best to ring David Dare on 9885 9678 and speak to him directly. David can readily provide a choice of available dates.  

Can’t use your ticket/s?  Similarly, if you have tickets you can’t use, we really, really, really appreciate it if you would please let David know as soon as you can.  Our remaining shows are already heavily booked, and if there are requests at Front of House on a night that is sold out on paper, we turn people away. 

If you only find out shortly before the performance that you can’t come, there is an half hour before the show when the Front of House phone is answered, (7.30 – 8.00pm and Sundays 4.15 - 4.45pm) so you can let them know so that those seats can be filled.  If the tickets are sold, we can reimburse you. Our theatre number is 9397 6705.  Please note this number is unattended, except at those designated times.

Thanks for your assistance with these processes and we look forward to helping you with your various enquiries.

Shirley Sydenham

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