Shropshire Star

Shropshire am dram group marks 50 golden years on the stage

A Shropshire drama group is set to celebrate 50 years on the stage with a new performance next week.

From left; Dawn Lake, Rob Hutchings and Linda Churms from Bayston Hill Amateur Dramatics Society

Members of Bayston Hill Amateur Dramatics Society are set to make a welcome return to acting as they perform the comedy Love Begins at 50 by Raymond Hopkins.

“It’s been hard getting back into the momentum of doing things after the pandemic,” said new chairman Dawn Lake.

“But we’re delighted to be back and I am hoping to take the group forward as we continue to excite our audience with a variety of genres of plays.

“We are looking forward to Love Begins at 50 – and the title is quite apt with us being 50 years old this year. It will be our 96th play – we lost three or four due to Covid – but we are closing in on that 100th performance!”

The play focuses on Anita and Clive Debanks, who have been married for 28 years and have led an uneventful life.

Although in a loveless marriage, Clive has never been unfaithful but, as preparations for his 50th birthday party are underway,he feels that life is passing him by and has a yearning for a final fling.

He chooses three prospective partners from the Lonely Hearts column in the local paper and, by a strange twist of fate, the same paper is offering a Caribbean Cruise as the first prize in a competition to find the perfect married couple.

Anita enters the competition but keeps it a secret from Clive and things start to get a little complicated.

Bayston Hill Amateur Dramatics Society performed its first shows in 1973 – A Chance of Air followed by See How They Run, by Philip King.

The Importance of Being Earnest, by Oscar Wilde, Blithe Spirit, by Noel Coward, and Educating Rita, by Willy Russell, are other plays the group has performed.

Reflecting on being part of the group, Dawn said: “I love it. I have always liked acting and when you step onto a stage, you are a different person and any problems and issues you have got usually go.

“You are that person for a period of time and I love the buzz you get from an appreciative audience. If the audience like it, you know you are pleasing people and you have given them a good night out.”

Love Begins at 50 is on from June 16-18 at 7.30pm each night and costs £8 per ticket. It takes place at Bayston Hill Memorial Hall, Lyth Hill Road, Bayston Hill, Shrewsbury

Tickets are available via, Roland’s Pharmacy, Bayston Hill or by calling 07814 177540.

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