AYTON SCHOOL PHOTOGRAPHIC & EVENTS

 

 

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Page six - The Theatre

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Reprinted from Beckside Number 193
Autumn Term 1979 

Photographs and copy of the Beckside the have
been loaned by Emma Killick (1978 - 1981)

This review written by Karen Jowett.

Colin Hardwick as Tom Sayer I'm a little worried about writing a review of TOM SAWYER, because - having been Assistant Stage Manager for the production - I'm likely to be slightly biased. But then, if I'm not biased there's the prospect of being confronted by thirty-three shouting American accents, and Miss Hirst. However, I shall tell it "My Way."

So, the musical TOM SAWYER, from Mark Twain’s novel, came to Great Ayton on the 22nd, 23rd, and 24th November. And so did thirty-three actors and actresses, ranging from First Form to the Upper Sixth.

The basic story is set in the little town of St Petersburg, Missouri, where we begin with Tom (Collie Hardwick) playing truant, fishing, while the townsfolk (Claire Fuller, Vicky Fuller, Helen Jackson, Alison Cranmer, and Heather Crossley) appear with baskets, singing. All very jolly, but Tom's peace doesn't last long, as Aunt Polly (Ursula Whittle) can be heard calling. Having bumped into the Minister (Andrew Cain), Tom runs off to school, where the teacher (Heather Crossley) is waiting. Tom then announces that David and Goliath were the first two disciples, and not Samson and Delilah, as one girl (Pauline White) suggested! Huck Finn (Paul von Fischer), Tom, and Joe Harper (Steven Murphy) appear with swords, as The Three Musketeers strike again!

Tom (Collie Hardwick) and Huck Finn (Paul von Fischer)Act 1, Scene 1, and Tom is feeding the cat (Michelle Robertson) with his dose of .... blue pain-killer. Tom's sneaky brother Sid (Stephen Miller) is watching closely, Secret Agent Number One, and reports back to Aunt Polly, which results in Tom whitewashing the fence. 

Then, in the haunted house, later that evening, Tom, Huck, and Joe are hunting for treasure. Not for long, as Injun Joe (disguised as a dumb Spaniard, with his Mediterranean suntan!) appears - I won't mention the removal of your trousers, Adam - and takes away the treasure. Shucks! Better luck next time, lads. Meanwhile, the Mums have been biting their nails, and are crying over their dead lost boys. No such luck, as the boys return, full of news, and taking half the scenery with them.

At the safe return of their boys, there's Celebration Day. There was a great atmosphere put over, nearly as good as when Forest won the European Cup. (Who let Robin Kemp in here?) Then came the square dance, which brought laughs and applause (but we got more in the dress rehearsal, when Rossy and Simon lost their trousers to the music.) Full credit goes to Smurfs who was "with the beat", and at the rate he was going will be with the "Come Dancing" team next week!

In this photo - L to R: Matthew Watson, Paul von Fischer, Steven Murphy, Colin Hardwick, David Davies, Lawrence Baker and Keith Dodd.Huck and Tom run off, exploring in the caves, but get lost, although they find Injun Joe's treasure, Tom breaks his arm. Injun Joe returns, and is about to attack when Huck shows some karate touches, and Injun Joes is thrown down a drop in the cave. He dies dramatically. Like all good stories, Aunt Polly arrives the townsfolk, and the boys are found. Basically, they all live happily ever after end finish with the whole cast singing, looking as though they've just jumped out of the book.

Thanks go to everyone for all the effort put into it, including the orchestra, and helpers. We'll see you at the ABC in Middlesbrough next month!

Karen Jowett.

Other photographs in Emma Killick's collection appear below

Colin Hardwick who played Tom Sawyer and Ursula Whittle in her role as Aunt Polly. Michelle Warsama and Adam Jones

Colin Hardwick who played Tom Sawyer and Ursula Whittle in her role as Aunt Polly.

Michelle Warsama and Adam Jones
Tom Sawyer and friends whitewashing the fence: Pictured are Keith Dodd, David Davies, Lawrence Baker, Steven Murphy, and Matthew Watson.

Colin Hardwick (Tom Sawyer) with other members of the cast.

Tom Sawyer and friends whitewashing the fence: Pictured are Keith Dodd, David Davies, Lawrence Baker, Steven Murphy, and Matthew Watson.

Colin Hardwick (Tom Sawyer) with other members of the cast.

Ursula Whittle as Aunt Polly The cast of Tom Sawyer

Ursula Whittle as Aunt Polly

Tom Sawyer and Aunt Polly with the cast.

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