March 7, 2024

Star president sends theatre interest rocketing

What happens when a familiar TV face becomes president of a seaside arts venue? Sheringham Little Theatre director Debbie Thompson explains.

We’ve gone viral! No it’s not an outbreak of flu at the theatre. It was an online explosion of interest in our venue following the announcement of our new star president Suranne Jones.

We hoped Suranne’s new role would help raise our profile and that’s exactly what has happened at levels beyond our expectations. A Facebook post announcing her arrival attracted 2,200 likes, 314 commenters and 137 shares – many times our usual levels of response. And we’ve seen our Instagram followers surge by 155pc, with the Suranne story being clicked on by more than 15,000 non-followers. We have also received many congratulations from local businesses, fellow community theatres and we know the news has reached arts organisations at national level.

Suranne has definitely raised awareness of the Little Theatre, and what we do here, which can only help in reaching new audiences and generating ticket sales.

Personally I am really thrilled we found someone of her stature who understands community theatre and we will continue to make youth and community work a priority. Suranne has made it clear she wants to be a hands-on president and will support the theatre in as many ways as she can. Our community role is clear in the coming weeks with two productions by our adult and youth amateur groups. The Little Theatre Players present Terry Pratchett’s Wyrd Sisters from March 28-30 – a fantasy comedy revolving around witches, an exiled king, romance and adventure and featuring a 22-strong cast whose ages range from teens to octogenarians.

And our youth musical group is staging Matilda Junior from April 11-13 as their annual Easter entertainment. The youngsters are having great fun being rebellious students helping Matilda teach the awful adults a lesson.

This month also marks the launch of new “open mic” sessions aimed at helping 11 to 18 year-olds showcase their performing talent. They start on March 7 from 4.30-6pm in The Hub. You can find out more by contacting the box office, or seeing our social media platforms.

If you want to support another bit of youth work, please use your Tesco blue tokens to vote for SLT after shopping at Sheringham or Mundesley. More tokens could mean more community fund money towards our new teatime music sessions for even younger performers, aged six to 10. The vote runs until the end of March, so time is running out.

And, if you are planning your summer diary, there is a bonus production to get you in a sunny, holiday mood. Our popular actress Loraine Metcalfe is doing an encore of her one-woman Shirley Valentine show, which we are repressing due to popular demand. It is on June 27-29 and Lol is giving her services free to help the fund-raising show which is generating cash to help support our arts programme.

For more information and tickets click here or call the box office on 01263 822347.

Share This with your Friends and Family...