Distinctive amateur drama
in Northampton since 1932
Registered Charity No. 294848
No Stone Unturned
by Masque Youth Theatre
Cast & Crew
John Bainbridge Euan Kitson
Billie Chloe McKoy
Jane Harris Anisha Sood
Helen Faulkner Rachel Halstead
Violet French Rosemary Chapman
Mary Bond Bekki George
Anna Keynes Harriet Clarke
Zach Daniel Falvey
Mike Parker William Cheyne
Corporal Perry Peter Robinson
Students, teenagers, families, shoppers and workers George Attwell-Gerhards, Hannah Banks, Will Billingham, Naomi Blackburn, Nicole Brack, William Brack, Benedict Churchus, Padraig Condron, Nick Easton, Alice Fitt, George Fitt, Imogen Fitt, David Hanly, Verity Johnson, Alanna Kitson, Jessica Lee, Jack Liggins, Maud McCutcheon, Max McLean, Edward Russell, Daniel Sanders, Nitish Shah, Ambrose Tipping, James Thomson, Noah Walters, Annie Warren, Laura White, Charlotte Wilson-Slight
Director Ursula Wright
Assistant Stage Managers Bryony Horn, Adam Monk, Tim Page
Stage Manager Sarah Ottley
Assistant Stage Manager Tristan Wrighton
Costumes Rhiannon George, Judy Robinson, The Works
Lighting Chris Easton, Ellie Potter, The Works
Sound Peter Robinson
Prompter Matthew Robinson
Box Office Sarah Hutchings, Mindy Robinson
Poster Design Tamsyn Payne
Photography Ian Clarke, Oliver Millett
Programme Design Martin Borley-Cox
Admin Assistant Sophia Monk
Front of House Masque Youth Theatre members and parents
Poster image for No Stone Unturned
Production No. 379
by the director, Ursula Wright
“Six mince pies nestling in a tray” was the image the committee came up with towards the end of last year, as we tried to explain to a puzzled youth theatre how their next production was shaping up.
It all began with their expressed wish to create an original show, based on local history – ‘the stones beneath our feet’. So we talked and looked at stones brought in by Tim Page, our knowledgeable and resourceful Assistant Director. These included Roman tiles, a Tudor brick and a lump of concrete full of stones broken by inmates of an Edwardian workhouse. We improvised short scenes based around the stones and performed them to each other.
Since the production was to be staged at St. Sep’s, it made sense to use the history of the church as our central theme – much as we had done in our Millennium play Zero Zero – and to look for stories hidden in, behind and beneath its stones. A tour of the building and a talk from the late, much-missed verger Reg Holland, gave us 12 possible ideas, from which six were chosen to be developed into short scenes – the mince pies!
Euan Kitson, taking a gap year before university, volunteered to write a play - the tray - which would contain the playlets. There followed a period of several anxious weeks as our product was assembled, subjected to quality-control checks and finally sampled during two long rehearsal sessions at half-term. We think the result is fresh, well- presented and unusual. You are warmly invited to come to Holy Sepulchre Church in April to see what we have cooked up.
In 1998, I devised and directed my first Masque Youth Theatre production (a revue about doors called Knock Knock). Since then there have been 13 more annual productions, in a wide variety of theatrical styles, from the classics to a modern musical, as well as workshops, summer schools and the unseen bread and butter of youth theatre, its weekly drama sessions. Creating theatre with what must be hundreds of young people during the past 14 years has been a wonderful experience – stimulating, instructive, sometimes tiring but always great fun. I am sad that this is to be my last production with the youth theatre (although not for Masque Theatre) but I am confident that “under new management” Masque Youth Theatre will continue to grow, to explore new ideas and to entertain us in the years ahead.
Thu 14 - Sat 16 April 2011 at 7.30pm
The Church of the Holy Sepulchre, Sheep Street, Northampton
Page last updated: 20/08/2011 Masque Theatre © 2011
by Greta Hendy
When Martin [the editor of Masque’s website and newsletter] asked me to review this production, I started to think about this mad woman (said with great affection) Ursula Wright.
The first play Ursula saw at the Masque was the 1990 production of ‘The Importance of Being Earnest’. This so impressed her that she joined us. When she retired from teaching she wanted something to do in her spare time. So she approached the Masque committee and asked if she could form a youth group. What a successful venture this became. Forty-plus teenagers at a two hour session once a week, the pre-teen group earlier on the same evening for one hour. I said she was mad.
I don’t know why I didn’t see their first production in 1998 because I rarely miss any Masque plays. But since then I haven’t missed one. I have been involved back stage on a couple and know how hard she and Brian [her husband] work and the high standard they expect and how the youngsters respect and respond to their input.
Ursula is now about to pass on the reins to others and I wish them well.
Ursula and Brian, thank you for 13 great youth productions and I’m looking forward to ‘Dancing at Lughnasa’ in October.
Now to what Martin actually asked me to do.
This production was dedicated to the memory of Dane Baekdal, a MYT member, and Reg Holland, a verger of the Church of the Holy Sepulchre.
Reg gave a talk to the MYT last October about the church. Euan Kitson a MYT member for six years, now off to Warwick University to read English, wrote this play about six of these stories.
Set in 2025, the church becomes a refuge for local people escaping a sudden, unexplained dust storm that threatened the town. The refugees acted out these stories to help pass the time and in doing so new relationships and understandings developed.
Euan played the Heritage Manager of the church, at first more concerned with the fabric of the church, but ending more concerned with the people. Euan is a talented young man, very evident when I first saw him six years ago. Well done! All the best at Warwick.
Once again, Ursula has drawn together a diverse group of 38 young people and with the help of Byrony Horn, Adam Monk and Tim Page gave us another great piece of theatre.
Some of these youngsters I’ve seen grow and develop into good actors, others were new to me and I can see in them the continuing future of MYT.
Young people like these rarely get the praise they deserve. They work so hard and I congratulate them on another successful production.
Masque Youth Theatre is a family orientated group. This year there are two Kitsons, three Fitts, two Robinsons and a third McCutcheon following her two brothers, and there have been other family groups in the past. Also, Ursula has managed to inveigle parents into helping behind the scenes. I know she has found these a great support.
It is difficult only mentioning a few out of such a strong group. But I would like to say a few words about Peter Robinson, a long standing member of the group also known in Masque senior productions. The Territorials had a strong link with the church and Peter gave a very good performance of a soldier attacked by this dust storm, as well as the vicar who donated a window in memory of his young baby. Peter is currently auditioning for various drama schools. I wish him well in a very precarious profession.
Congratulations to everyone concerned in ‘No Stone Unturned’. May this group continue to flourish.