Exclusive interview with Strictly’s Pasha!

Pasha Kovalev very kindly ‘phoned us this morning and answered questions you put up on social media for us to ask him!

Listen to this wonderful, exclusive interview with Camberley Theatre. If you buy your tickets for his performance here on May 13th 2017, before December 31st 2016, you will be invited to a very special Q&A session here, 30 minutes before the doors open. This applies if you have already purchased your tickets – know anyone might like some for Christmas??

 

50th Anniversary Party

We celebrated Camberley Theatre’s first 50 years with a fabulous birthday party last week – the Mayor, Cllr John Winterton and the Chief Executive of Surrey Heath Borough Council, Karen Whelan, both attended and gave inspiring and very positive speeches about the theatre’s future.

Our youth theatre, CMA invited some of their members to sing – beautifully – for us.

Farnham duo, Portland, also sang in the café area after which we all went through to the main auditorium to watch a fabulous film detailing the theatre’s history and celebrating some of our most famous performers. Put together by John Peddie also including footage by Jonny Byczok – many thanks to John and Jonny!

(Photos Drew Tommons)

Finally everyone was invited to partake in the delicious birthday cake, made by Camberley Theatre staff member Kayleigh Garland, representing the fabulous new seats in the auditorium!

Happy Birthday Camberley Theatre – here’s to the next 50 years!

(Photos Alan Meeks)

Happy 50th Camberley Theatre!

It was October 1966 when Camberley Civic Hall  first opened it’s doors –  50  years ago this month.

As you know we have been celebrating all year, with special birthday  messages recorded  for us  by  a host of wonderful artists who have performed at the theatre this year – Rick Wakeman, Ian Waite &  Natalie Lowe, Fairport Convention, Chris Ramsey and Lau are among the acts who have filmed 50th anniversary messages for us.

We found a wonderful treasure trove of vintage posters in the Surrey Heath  Museum  recently – some  have been framed and are now on display in the bar and function room at the theatre. Here is a selection – does anyone remember attending any of these shows? Let us know, we’d love to hear from you! Funnily enough Ralph McTell is also celebrating his golden anniversary this year and performing at the theatre on November 11th – we found a poster from his concert here in 1979! Happy 50th Ralph, Happy 50th Camberley Theatre!

 

 

Meet Andy Edmeads our new Venue and Operations Manager.

We’ve had a few staff changes here at Camberley Theatre over the last couple of weeks. We are delighted to introduce you to our new Venue and Operations ManagerAndy Edmeads.

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Congratulations on your new job as Venue and Operations Manager. Can you tell us a bit about what you’ve done and where you’ve worked previously?

Thank you! I’ve been working in theatre for a number of years, starting as a professional actor from the age of 13. For ten years I worked on a number of theatre shows, tours, education work in schools, voice overs, television and short films and worked with lots of great people from Hugh Laurie, Rob Brydon and Benedict Cumberbatch!

After graduating from the University of Exeter I began directing and writing and leading drama workshops for kids, adults and those with special needs before moving into Venue Management and Arts Marketing – so I’ve got a lot of varied experience!

 I joined Camberley Theatre as Marketing and Business Development Manager in December 2014 and I’m delighted with the new role and continuing the good work the team around me have been doing since I came here – starting with producing another fantastic pantomime!

 You know Camberley Theatre really well through your previous role here – what new ideas will you be bringing, now you are the venue manager?

I feel really at home here and think my knowledge and experience of the Theatre and previous roles at Surrey Heath Borough Council will mean I can hit the ground running!

Over the next 6 – 12 months there’ll be more stand-up comedy at the Theatre; our audiences love it and we’ve been lucky to have welcomed some of the best names this year like Russell Howard, Al Murray and Chris Ramsey – so expect lots more belly laughs and aching jaws!

 I want us to further improve our reputation for events and welcome more community groups and societies to the Theatre to help them create memorable productions and events such as award shows, dinner dances etc.

Our Kids Parties have been a real hit since launching them in January and with our Pantomime getting such great reviews last year, I want us to do more family events and productions.

 We’ll also be back at Frimley Lodge Park on 5th and 6th August for the fourth Frimley Lodge Live festival so watch this space for an exciting and eclectic line up!

 Why do you think it’s important Camberley has a theatre?

The town (and the wider area!) are so lucky to have a venue like this here; asides from professional productions, we also hire to community groups, schools and charities for a number of occasions throughout the year. It’s our 50th birthday this year and if you look back through our history it’s always been a multipurpose venue and I want to see all our spaces used more.

 Camberley is a town bursting with activity and locally there are lots of talented people and groups and we want to be the place they come to showcase this!

 As every show is different here, we are used to working flexibly and adapting to the needs of our customers and we apply this same logic to our private hire events, parties and conferencing.

 Can you remember your first trip to the theatre?

My first ever production I remember doing was year 6 at Junior School where I was Puck in A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Before that point I was the sulking kid made to be a shepherd in the Nativity but my teacher really inspired me and I never looked back! My parents got really into theatre because of me so from the age of 12 or 13 was going to the theatre regularly for everything from pantomimes, plays, drama festivals and musicals.

 What’s your most memorable visit to the theatre ever been?

The most memorable as an audience member would be seeing Glenn Close as Blanche in A Streetcar Named Desire at the National Theatre. I love the play and Tennessee Williams and Glenn Close was amazing in that role. As a performer, Peter Pan in Woking where I played Tootles was an unforgettable experience and remains my favourite pantomime  – I could watch that story over and over!

You organise the Children’s Parties at Camberley Theatre – what’s been your favourite party so far?

We did a Charlie and the Chocolate themed party which was great fun. 35 five year olds chanting Oompah Loompah rhymes stays with you for quite a while!

You were lucky enough to go to the Edinburgh Festival in August, have you got any tips for us?

I saw 32 shows in 5 days so my top tip is RELAX!!! In all seriousness, there’s so much to see and do at the Fringe that however long you go for it is never enough time. Plan ahead in advance and see as much as you can. It’s a great place to see new work and I love the Pleasance (great for comedy) and Assembly Gardens venues the best. See you there in 2017!

Thanks Andy – good luck with all your plans, really looking forward to seeing them in action.

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 A star is born. Andy aged 10 as Puck!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Phillip Dyson

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Internationally acclaimed concert pianist Phillip Dyson come to Camberley Theatre on November 18th. We caught up with him and asked him a few questions…

What’s your favourite thing about going on tour

There are many, and all very enjoyable to me. The travel, hotel, restaurants, meeting new people, being in different places, enjoying being out early in a morning jogging and discovering everything new. Seeing a new city and everything about it. The joy of being there at that moment and for that brief time. However, of everything I think the performance and all that goes with that. The audience, and to ensure a successful Concert in every way. And also, to see old friends. Being on tour is a wonderful way of doing that.

What can the Camberley audience expect?

My Camberley audience can expect an enjoyable evening of wonderful popular piano classics, along with a little amiable banter to accompany. I will be presenting one of my favourite programmes including such iconic music as: Beethoven ‘Moonlight Sonata’, Chopin Nocturne in E flat and Fantaisie Impromptu, Scott Joplin The Entertainer and Maple Leaf Rag, Debussy Clare de Lune, Rachmaninov Prelude in G minor and George Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue. A super programme in every way. Something very much for everyone!

Have you any funny or special memories of Surrey in general?

Well, it is always nice to perform locally. No flights nor hotels to worry about. Also, again to see people you know is always a pleasure. Surrey itself is a great place to live. It has plenty of greenery and fresh air, but also it  never seems far from anywhere. For me to be so close to London is wonderful.

This is our 50th Anniversary year, can you remember your first theatre trip and / or the first piece of music you bought?

I am so pleased to be performing at Camberley as part of the theatre’s 50th Anniversary Year. It is a great privilege indeed. Theatre is a very magical place that is a part of every city and most large town in the country, part of our arts and culture, and integral to our way of life. Long may this continue and grow.

My first visit to the theatre would have been to local Pantomime. And early music purchases of Debussy, Ravel and Billy Mayerl. Somethings really don’t change!

 Thanks Phillip – see you in November!

Here’s Phillip playing Scott Joplin at Nonsuch Mansion House, in Cheam, Surrey last Summer. Fabulous stuff!

 

 

New seats are getting installed!

The old seats have now been removed and a couple of full skips have been emptied…the lovely brand new seats are now half way through their installation!

We have an Open Day on Saturday 3rd September (the same day as the Car Show in Camberley) where you can come and have a little sit down. Then why not enjoy a cuppa in the café or drop in on the free theatre workshops being provided by Creative Minds?  Enjoy a bit of singing, dancing, musical theatre, drama…..for a variety of age groups…

We’ll be open from 10am to 4pm plus if you buy your panto tickets on this day, we’ll organise free parking for you in the Knoll Road multi storey.

 

Holy Moly!!