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Current Show

Curtains - A New Musical Comedy

Thursday 11th May - Sunday 14th May 2017
Hillcrest Halls, The Mount, 42 Fryston Av, Coulsdon CR5 2PT


In a last ditch attempt to fulfil his lifelong dream of 'being in a show', the Earl of Ederidge ticks off the final item on his bucket list by investing in a musical, on the condition that he can be in it! The show's writer, has-been Hollywood star Guy Travis, arrives in England with his sister Vera, accidentally bumping into the rather prudish Jane, the Earl's niece and heir to the vast Ederidge estate. However, fate intervenes on the eve of Opening Night when the Earl suddenly snuffs it leaving chaos in his wake and a sinister plot emerges to rid Jane of the family fortune forever…

Can the show go on? Will the evil butler Graves and his naughty side-kick, the housekeeper Clarissa, claim the Earl's fortune? One thing is for sure, this dead funny musical will keep you guessing and your feet tapping 'til the bitter end!


GUY TRAVIS - Jeffrey Chinappen
VERA TRAVIS – Rachel Smith
GRAVES - Ian Gibson
CLARISSA GROLCHEN – Shelene Mackenzie
THE EARL OF EDERIDGE - George Boyeldieu

Words from Richard Sykes, the writer of Curtains

We can blame the dawning of a new Millennium for many things: international paranoia, the rise of the far right, Coldplay. For me the year 2000 was an opportunity and it gave me the happiest moment of my life.

I'd written a 'Fred and Ginger homage' musical for my degree in Music and English. It never occurred to me that anyone would perform it, but when a local operatic society wanted a new musical for their Millennium show, I pushed it in front of their noses and said 'Do that!'. To my surprise, they did.

There are elements of everything that makes me smile in Curtains. It has farce, wordplay, stupidity and uplifting songs. It doesn't pretend to be subtle and it doesn't have any hidden messages or overblown morals. It just makes me smile and I hope it does the same for you.

I was in the chorus of the first production of Curtains. I was writing and tweaking up to the opening night so when the curtain went up there was a huge sense of relief. With the opening number out of the way and the chorus back in the dressing rooms, I stopped to listen to the first scene through the monitors. I sank down and sat on the floor, overjoyed. Writing something then being a part of its production, I'd forgotten where the laughs were. To hear an audience laughing at the jokes, following the plot and even clapping to the songs was something I'll never forget.

So here we are, 17 years later; A few rewrites and some better scoring further down the line. Curtains launched my performing career, not my writing. However, another musical is ready and waiting. It's set in the back of a Yorkshire chip shop. Maybe next Millennium...

Enjoy the show.
Richard Sykes

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