A message from Mercedes

Hello everyone. I am Mercedes and I have been a member of the Farndale Townswomen’s Guild for a good few years now. I won’t tell you exactly how long – as you might be able to guess my age! I love being involved in the dramatic society. Sadly, I haven’t won any acting awards yet, but I think it’s the hard work and enthusiastic team work that counts. I must admit that Mrs. Reece has […]

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Comedic Christmas Carol launches festive season at Millgate

Saddleworth Players are in a festive mood with rehearsals underway for their Christmas comedic extravaganza The Farndale Avenue Housing Estate Townswomen’s Guild Dramatic Society’s Production of A Christmas Carol by David Mcgillivray and Walter Zerlin Jnr.  In this hilarious play the Farndale Ladies, whose lack of talent never stops them from aiming high, mount another assault on the classics with their stage version of this Dickensian favourite, A Christmas Carol.    The ambitious cast of four divas and […]

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“So the Millgate is back on top form” Review of ‘Two’ by John Rigby

After the long silence of lockdown, the Millgate has re-opened with a confident and convincing production of Jim Cartwright’s Two. This clever and ingenious play is set in an unnamed pub, with a crowd of mostly unnamed imaginary regulars, minimal staging, some suggestive period music, no props whatever – and, of course, just two actors. Luckily Kate Davies and Mark Rosenthal are more than equal to the challenge. They alternate between being landlord and landlady behind the […]

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‘A dream play for an actor’ by Mark Rosenthal

So, this started out as a bit of fun over Zoom! It was during one of my many bored evenings in lockdown one that the idea of trying to rehearse a play first entered my head. One night, Kate and I were equally bored and after a very short conversation, the cast were in place. We decided that it would be fun to get a director on board and approached Verity. Luckily, she was as […]

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‘Two’ by Jim Cartwright – Director’s Preview

For many of us actively involved in Community Theatre, the lure of the tinsel dust is hard to ignore.  We may stagger away from the remains of the last night supper exhausted, crying “Never again!” but mere weeks later we’re back pouring over scripts and being seduced by another great story. The very first lockdown took us by surprise.  We’re used to being out three nights a week in rehearsals, not sitting on a sofa binge watching […]

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Our ‘Recovery’ Season Preview – Saddleworth Players

Welcome to our 2021/22 season preview. It’s great to be back! Our play choices for the season are deliberately light and comedic, with the Farndale farce thrown in for good measure, as we wish to give audiences a welcome break from the doom and gloom of the pandemic and our Players an opportunity to come together and laugh once more. The ‘Recovery Season’ will see the theatre booking to full capacity, with the addition of […]

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Meet the cast of Deathtrap

Ira Levin’s classic comedy-thriller Deathtrap comes to the Millgate stage from 28 March to 4 April. The action takes place in a writer’s study, which is a classy stable conversion, attached to an old Colonial house in The East Hamptons, USA, belonging to Sidney and Myra Bruhl. The Cast . . . David Noble – Sidney Bruhl He is a sophisticated, articulate, clever man who was previously a highly successful playwright but is currently a […]

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Be thrilled, amused and entertained: Deathtrap – Director’s Preview

April 2020 is thriller time and I am happy to be directing Ira Levin’s classic: Deathtrap.  Written in 1975, it still holds the record for the longest running comedy-thriller on Broadway, was made into a film starring Michael Caine in 1982, was revived in the West End in 2010 and thoroughly deserved its ongoing popularity. It is set in America, in The Hamptons and is a masterclass in thriller writing, ingeniously constructed, with a skilful […]

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Le Grand Return – opening night review by John Rigby

Saddleworth Players’ latest production, at the Millgate Arts Centre, Alan Stockdill’s Le Grand Return, opened last night to a packed and appreciative audience. This play, based on reality, tells the story of an elderly ex-soldier who despite his poor health is determined to return to Normandy to attend the fiftieth anniversary of the D-day landings, and specifically to revisit the French house where his best friend was killed. The play begins with broad but painful […]

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Le Grand Return – Director’s Notes

It’s 1994 and the 50th Anniversary of the D-Day landings looms.  Tommy, Alf and Edwin are incarcerated in Coldrick Nursing Home.  In spite of his ever worsening heart condition, D-Day veteran, Tommy, is determined to break out and rejoin his old comrades on the Normandy Beaches and salute the fallen. The friends conspire to escape and, in action that takes them from dining room to Belgian port, to French village and cemetery, they chat, they […]

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