Daytime Theatre actors head into spring with a merry show
IN TODAY'S society, turning 35 is no big deal.
People tend to live much longer than their ancestors did.
But for Ipswich Little Theatre Society's Daytime Theatre Troupe, turning 35 is a monumental achievement - some of the troupe have trodden the boards of the Ipswich Little Theatre's stage for the entire time.
It was in 1983 when several young mothers, who found the commitment of being involved in major evening productions difficult, realised they could hold rehearsals and performances during the day and their children could be present as well.
Following a meeting of interested people, Ipswich Little Theatre Members Jan Paterson and Jane Sheppard set up the Daytime Theatre Troupe.
The first production was Pinocchio and the Blue Fairy, scripted by ILT member Dani Rogers, and directed by Ms Sheppard.
Since then, this troupe of actors has staged 61 productions at the Incinerator Theatre complex.
Watching the children's faces as they marvel at the colourful sets and costumes when the lights come up is something the actors never tire of.
According to one of the long-standing thespians of the Daytimers, Kay McAllan, it is about having a wonderful time, developing lifelong friendships and providing young children with access to live theatre.
"It's a very intimate space and the children are up close to the action," Ms McAllan said.
Another of those long-standing members is "Mrs Music", Chic Currie, who has provided the musical accompaniment since the second production back in 1984.
The Daytime Theatre Troupe's current production is Santa's Christmas Story, written and directed by Ms McAllan.
This production boasts another regular performer, Anne England. Ms England appeared in the first show and is playing the role of Chrissy Tree in this production, which is in rehearsal.
Although this merry tale is filled with all the favourite characters singing their way through Santa's Christmas Story, the children are welcome to bring their Santa letters and put them into Santa's letterbox.
Ms Shepphard said it was exciting to have another generation of performers join the Daytime Theatre Troupe this year; two young mums used to play at the theatre as children.
On average, the Daytime Theatre troupe performs to up to 1500 children during a season.
Shows target three- to eight-year-olds.
Kindergarten groups also watch the performances.
"The kids think you are real in your role. It is just wonderful to see how much they enjoy these performances," Ms McAllan said.
Santa's Christmas Story will be performed from October 23-November 2, 2018.
Bookings should be made to Chic Currie at 32889783 or 0409725315 Admission is $8.
It is a wonderful way for grandparents to entertain their grandchildren or join them in the audience.