With peace established and life returning to normality the Sodbury Players was initiated in 1946 by a team of enthusiastic residents of Chipping Sodbury and its environs, their dedicated approach quickly gaining them an enviable reputation.
Productions then as now were presented at Chipping Sodbury Town Hall which bore little resemblance to the now renovated building with its excellent facilities.
In early days the stage was erected prior to each production; great fun! Built by assembling wooden planks on top of tressles, meant not only the boards creaked after these exertions. It would be an exaggeration to describe the finished results as resembling a "pocket handkerchief".
Wartime dramas including "Flare Path" and "I Wont Be Home To Dinner" featured in early programmes and over the years a wide variety of classics, comedies, farces (always popular with audiences) have been presented. A recent production of "Don't Just Lie There Say Something" proved a popular choice. Pantomimes also have wide audience appeal. "Stepping Out" created a challenge for female members a latent talent for tap dancing revealing a number of budding "Ginger Rogers". Technically demanding "Noises Off" stretched technical crew and actors to the limit and beyond; but then being an
amateur thespian requires a little insanity! The Sodbury Players regularly support One Act Play Festivals and have received numerous awards.
We were saddened in 1995 by the death of our supportive President - Her Grace the Duchess of Beaufort. Our new President is Joanna Shipp, appropriate for our Jubilee Year as Joanna was an original member playing the role of Prince Charming in the first Pantomime.
Plans to celebrate the 50th year include a repeat of the first Pantomime "Cinderella", a classic in the Spring followed by a mystery in the Autumn. The Players are to host the Avon One Act Play Festival during the week 20th to 27th February Other special events are a Fun Day, and a social event which it is hoped will provide an opportunity to become reacquainted with former members.. The year to end in style with a Grand Ball.
The next 50 years? Doubtless new challenges and hopefully the achievement of the Players greatest ambition a Theatre of their own.
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