Monday, 6 July 2015

    The Importance of Am Dram

    Something people may not know is that Nikki and I have both worked professionally as actors; it's a big dream of both of ours, and a huge passion. We spent one Saturday trawling through the shelves in the NT Bookshop, and it just hammered home to me how much I adore devouring a character and a plot. There is however, a slight depression that comes with not being able to fulfill your dream day after day; having the talent but having no luck. Both me and Nikki champion Fringe venues wherever we can, having performed at The Yard, Hackney and Soho Theatre. 
    Yes, acting, like other jobs, is down to damn hard work, but a part of it is just luck; luck you fit the right casting, luck you know the right person, etc... Hence why amateur dramatic societies are so important; they're filled with people who love to create, and just do it!
    The company I work for has their own amateur dramatic society; The Carat Players, and I recently went to see their production of Death by Design at the New Diorama Theatre
    The play was a hoot - a farcical murder mystery with an endearingly abusive couple at its centre, surrounded by an abundance of eccentrics. Each actor/colleague never once stumbled or corpsed, even when there was some 1930s twerking going on. 
    What shone through was how much love there was in the production, everyone - director, lighting, cast - was so thrilled to be part of something special, and importantly, FUN. 
    There was true talent on display and the same level of dedication that you'd find in professional theatre companies. The show was executed without a glitch, and the pride of the participants, when taking their bows to well-earned, rapturous applause, was infectious. 
    I'd actually never been to the New Diorama Theatre but with such bargain ticket prices it's going to become a regular haunt. With 80 seats, it's intimate yet professional, and has such dedication to establishing emerging theatre companies.
    I suppose the point of this post, is go see the fringe stuff; the plays that don't have massive celebrity names on the poster, or X-Factor runners up on the cast list. Fringe venues, am dram societies, and professional companies working on a tight budget, have so much to give and are doing things purely because the want to be doing them. There are plays that provoke discussion and evoke emotion, new writing that's desperate to be seen; go see it, you won't regret that decision.
    I went to see Carat Players and I loved it, a good job all round! 

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    1 comment

    Anonymous said...

    HI there , enjoyed reading this post and thought I would add a thought of my own.
    I was in AM DRAM in fact that inspired me to learn more and then go to drama school. After I left I was asked to perform in an AM DRAM show at my old society..AND IT WAS AWFUL..the gulf of knowledge between me and them was MASSIVE..i vowed then not to do am dram again.
    Further on down the line I have worked as a pro for 11 years doing various things and then fancied doing a musical..i went to an am dram society..and auditioned for Stine in City of Angels..got the part.
    Started rehearsing and even tho these people are amatuers..they get it..they research..they don't OVERPLAY as some am dram actors do..its truthful and real..we are performing this in October to a small 90 seater theatre..but I cant wait..as it is going to be excellent.
    So my thoughts on AM DRAM I think depend on how the am dram people are 'trained' by their directors and peers..the old skool am dram is dying out and the new skool seem to work from the ground up..like us actors..
    Just my thoughts

    Clive
    c_dancey@sky.com
    www.clivedancey.co.uk

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