Monday, 06 June 2022 00:00

A trio of firsts for opening show of Sheringham summer drama season

Written by  Richard Batson
Rate this item
(1 Vote)
A trio of firsts for opening show of Sheringham summer drama season Images courtesy of Nick Earnshaw

A summer drama set in a 1970s nightclub will break new ground by teaming up young performers from two theatres 180 miles apart.

Stags and Hens will open Sheringham Little Theatre’s summer season in August, bringing together soon-to-be married Dave and Linda, and their friends, when their pre-wedding party nights turn out to be at the same venue. 

The action, set in the night club toilets, will see a 12-strong cast provided by young actors from the Little Theatre and the West Midlands county town of Stafford, where play director Nick Earnshaw also runs youth drama groups at Gatehouse Youth Theatre and Rooftop Studios. 

In a trio of “firsts, it is the first time the two venues have collaborated, the first time the Stafford team has “toured”, and the first time Nick has directed a show by his favourite playwright Willy Russell.

“I have adored the play since I first saw it when I was 16 and I love Willy Russell’s work. I was in his One for the Road here at Sheringham in a previous summer season – playing alongside theatre director Debbie Thompson,” he said.

“There are a lot of young characters in Stags and Hens so we are bringing older members from my Stafford groups. They are very talented up-and-coming performers, who have also won many medals in their drama exams. Doing summer ‘rep’ drama with its short rehearsal period is great training for young actors,” added Nick – who is youth theatre leader at the Gatehouse where he was himself once a young member. 

He is currently finalising the cast and talking to set designers about creating a moveable stage to create a quick pace to the show. It features two toilet areas where the couple and their friends reveal their true personality traits to each other. 

“The story can make you laugh and cry, and although it takes place in a northern club in 1979, is still very relatable today. Willy Russell has a skill of looking at working class divide and how it impacts on everyday relationships. We have all had those friends in our youth we remained close with even if their effect on us was sometimes toxic.”  

Stags and Hens runs from August 4 -6 (7.30pm plus a Saturday 2.30pm matinee)

Other summer season shows are:

  • Wait Until Dark – August 9-13 - a thriller set in 1960s London involving a con-man, two ex-convicts and a mysterious doll
  • Summer Holiday – August 16-20 - stage musical of the classic Cliff Richard road trip across Europe in a double decker bus, filled with singalong 1960s hits.
  • Table Manners – August 23-31 – classic Alan Ayckbourn comedy romp  as Annie’s planned illicit weekend with Norman unravels

More details and tickets at or the box office on 01263 822347.


Last modified on Monday, 06 June 2022 17:41

Visit the following businesses

R T Harvey Ltd
We were established in 1924 on Tombland in Norwich. The company sold a full range of Game meat, poultry and pork. We moved to Grove Road in 1985 and now sells all game products, pork and poultry as well as cooked meats etc. In 1997 we gained ...
The Maids Head Hotel
The AA 4 Star silver Maids Head Hotel is renowned for being the oldest Hotel in the UK.  The site has been providing hospitality since the early 12th century. With its long history of famous guests, including Edward the Black Prince, Catherine ...
Office Water Supplies
Office Water Supplies is a family run business established in 1989 to supply chilled and hot drinking water dispensers to both business and domestic customers.  Based in the Brecklands area of Norfolk just off the A11, we are able to cover ...
Mattishall Golf Academy
Mattishall Golf Club is home to Mattishall Golf Academy, a new building full of indoor golfing fun! The Academy has the latest Trackman simulators and a 9-hole indoor mini golf course, both of which can be played come rain or shine. It’s perfect for ...
Cole's of King's Lynn
With over 30 years of experience supplying the catering trade with our fresh fish and seafood, we have an established network of reputable suppliers giving us the opportunity to fulfil all orders and source the "hard to find" product's. We pride ...
Wensum Print
Welcome to Wensum Print of Norwich. We are an independent print company offering an all round print service. We have been established in Norwich for over 35 years, and have the knowledge and ability to offer you high quality results with ...
benefits banner

Related items

  • Sheringham Little Theatre acts to tackle its surging power bill

    A charity-run seaside theatre is facing a new drama. How to pay for its surging power bill.

    Bosses at Sheringham Little Theatre face a staggering rise in the cost of their electricity from the current £10,000 a year to a breathtaking £70,000.

    The seven-fold hike is much higher than the 500pc increases being reported by many regional businesses who are asking for government help to survive.

    The soaring cost of living also affects audience spending, seeing people questioning whether to have a trip to the theatre when they have their own food and power pressures at home. 

    The double whammy is even putting the future of the community arts venue, which has just finished its summer season, in jeopardy in the longer term. 

  • Sight loss doesn’t dim Norfolk actor’s stage talents

    Actor Gillian Dean is set to play a blind woman in a summer drama thriller, using her own visual impairment to bring extra realism to the role.

    But two weeks later she will play a fully-sighted character in a classic comedy, using stage craft and support from fellow cast members so her disability is not noticeable.

    The inspirational 42-year-old from Lakenham, Norwich is currently rehearsing and learning lines for both roles at Sheringham Little Theatre this month.In Wait Until Dark she is blind Susy who is alone in her 1960s London flat with a doll being targeted by three desperate con men. In Table Manners she is Annie, who is trying to spend an illicit weekend with her brother-in-law.

    Gillian said: “Thumbs up to the Little Theatre for casting a visually-impaired person to play Susy. “It is good for ethical reasons and because we disabled actors are under-represented - but I can also bring real authenticity to the role".

    “I have played sighted roles before and it is all about talking to the cast and director about what I can and cannot do and finding ways around it. I can see enough not to fall over things but if, say, I cannot see a step on stage we can arrange for someone else to go up it first so I can follow. And if my cue is from a facial expression other cast members can make a noise or give me a nudge.”

    Play director Brendan Murray said: “A sighted actor can represent a blind person on stage, but Gillian’s real-life experience is teaching us how to portray things from a genuine visually-impaired perspective. She is amazingly positive and a very able actor.”


  • Sheringham Theatre unveils autumn and winter programme

    Panto, poetry, music, comedy, family shows and new drama are in the wings at Sheringham Little Theatre which has just announced its autumn and winter line-up.

    Snow White is this year’s pantomime has plenty of local flavour, including seven friendly Norfolk locals and scenes set in Sheringham Woods.

    And there is a welcome return of local youngsters to join the professional cast for the first time since Covid in a season running from December 10 to 31.

    Other highlights from September to December include a new comic LGBT drama Time and Tide penned by north Norfolk-based EastEnders scriptwriter James McDermott, and amateur dramas about the life of codebreaker Alan Turing, and 1970s women’s “libber” Margot Mason.

    Theatre director Debbie Thompson said: “There’s a huge variety of entertainment in our latest programme to cater for all ages, tastes, and interests – from popular family shows and music acts to cutting edge drama to make you think.”

  • Band music at Mannington Hall raises funds for Sheringham Little Theatre

    In a classic English summer sight and sound, brass band music filled the air of a Norfolk stately home garden.

    The idyllic outdoor concert, by Cawston Brass at Mannington Hall, played to an all-ages 130-strong crowd from babes in arms and families to pensioners.

    It helped raise funds for the promoters, Sheringham Little Theatre, and the band who are reigning regional champions.

    A two-hour programme of stage musical and movie tunes entertained audience members, many of whom had picnicked beforehand in the grounds of the hall, which is home to theatre president Lady Walpole.

  • Wardrobe sale will fashion funds for Little Theatre

    A community wardrobe is selling off some of its spare clothes to help raise funds for Sheringham Little Theatre.

    Rails of items will be on sale at the theatre on Sunday July 17 from 11am to 3pm at a free-to-enter event. 

    Sadly a fashion show planned for the Friday night, July 15, has been cancelled due to unforeseen circumstances. 

    But the sale is still going ahead on the Sunday featuring vintage, retro and modern items including evening and day dresses, coats and men’s suits, along with some uniform pieces, fancy dress, fabrics and haberdashery, and accessories such as gloves, hats and wigs. 


© All Things Norfolk 2008 - 2022
Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Monday Mention to all the wonderful local independent businesses featured on including…