The monthly newsletter of Wellington Repertory Theatre Inc.
Newsletter Vol 91 No. 1 January/February 2017
Message from President
Happy New Year everyone! While it’s already February, we’re already well underway with things. The committee had its first meeting at the end of January, a grant plan has been developed and rehearsal space booked for the year ahead, the financial report for 2016 is completed (ready for the AGM), and auditions have been held and casting decisions made for our first production of the year, Play On!.
In preparing for the upcoming AGM, we’ve been reflecting on how positive the past year has been: We had a diverse line-up, which included two large cast productions that provided opportunities for lots of people to get involved and become part of the Wellington Repertory family. All three shows we staged were fun to be involved with and both creatively and financially successful, with Annabel’s Hensley’s production of Ladies in Lavender in particular achieving significant critical success (including a great review and multiple Antoinettes).
Our focus on participation, quality, and a commercial approach (including careful cost control around productions and driving audience attendance) are important for the sustainability of Wellington Repertory into the future. Our 90th Anniversary last year was something to be proud of, but we hope to be in even better shape as a society when we are celebrating our 100th in 2026!
In that context, please show your support and commitment by renewing your membership now and put your hand up to help out with productions even when you are not part of the cast. The success of all of our shows, and ultimately of Wellington Repertory, depends on having a great crew/support team. We especially need more people to get involved in props, costumes and set design, so if you have any talents or interests in these or other areas, please let us know.
Hope to see you soon – either at the AGM in March or at opening night of Play On! in April.
Thanks to all those who joined us at our Christmas party on 17 December – it was a great chance for members to catch up. Special thanks to the various committee members who provided the catering; to those who put on the entertainment for the evening (Moggie, Gillian & Oliver, and Marty, Steve & Richard); and especially to our friends at Stagecraft Theatre for the use of the Gryphon for the evening.
Now is the time to join Wellington Repertory as a new member or renew your subscription for the year. Members receive Wellington Repertory Theatre’s newsletter, can participate in productions, and get a discount on tickets to shows during the year.
Due to increases expenses in putting on a production we are having to increase our membership fees this year.
There are a couple of membership options for your consideration:
1. Standard membership
$35 covers one calendar year for a single active membership
$50 covers one calendar year for double active membership
$25 covers one calendar year for Students / Unwaged
2. Join the 200 Club.
This is a great option for many members and is a practical and helpful way of supporting Wellington Repertory Theatre. Your donation of $200 will help us continue staging quality productions that contribute to the vibrancy of Wellington as New Zealand’s arts capital. As well as covering your annual membership subscription for the year, this donation of $200 entitles you to:
two complimentary tickets for each of the Wellington Repertory productions planned for the year (approximate value, $150 a year, based on three productions per year)
acknowledgements in newsletters / programmes etc.
notification of special events for 200 Club members.
We would like to acknowledge the support of all the 200 Club members to date. We encourage you to join from the start of the year to take advantage of the member benefits such as discounted ticket prices.
Play On! is cast – many thanks to everyone who came to the auditions. I was really pleased so many people came so I could cast it within the week. We have a great mix of experienced and new actors Our cast of; Rose Gallen, Steve Bell, Thomas McGinty, Cathy Leonard, Jess Soderberg, David Tayler, Josh Kingsford, Susannah Donovan, Annette Cochran and Sue Reeves and myself are ably assisted by Nicola Todd our Production Assistant and Prompt.
Ellie, our Production Manager has assembled a formidable production crew – a few positions left to fill over the next few weeks. Again, it’s good to see new faces along with some of our experienced team.
Rehearsals have started well at Toi Poneke Arts Centre in Abel-Smith Street. The cast are starting to learn their lines and the characters are beginning to appear.
On Sunday 12 we had a cast and crew social get together as you can see from some of the photographs it went really well!
Sussanah Donovan, Linda Bennett(ASM) and Rosie Gallen.
Chris Collie-Holmes (SM), Ross Foubister (Set) and Steve Bell.
Annual General Meeting
Notice is hereby given that the 91st Annual General Meeting of Wellington Repertory Theatre will be held on Sunday 26 March at 5pm at the Gryphon Theatre, 22 Ghuznee Street.
All members are invited to attend as this is your chance to have a say in the activities of the Theatre and new members for the committee are also welcome
It is with sadness that we rerecord the passing in December of two past members of Wellington Repertory Theatre.
Pauline Yerex better known as Pauline D’Emden - active in with Wellington Repertory Theatre in the 1950s and early sixties.
Life Member Bill Sheat writes: -
“I had the very great pleasure of directing her in three shows for Wellington
Repertory- The Seven Year Itch and two revues. She was a great comedy
performer. In one of the revues we had a 1930s sequence. Pauline was Shirley
Temple. Her performance of “On The Good Ship Lollypop” brought the house
down. In The Seven Year Itch she may not have been as glamourous as
Marilyn Monroe in the film version but she was a better comedy actress.
In Born Yesterday she played opposite Selwyn Toogood. Selwyn was a big
actor in every sense but Pauline was more than his equal. She played many
parts for Wellington Repertory including Eliza Doolittle in George Bernard
Michele Amas – well known Wellington actor, playwright and poet joined Wellington Repertory Theatre in 1982 after leaving school in Dunedin and played Uncle Vanya’s daughter in that year’s production of Anton Chekhov’s Uncle Vanya.