Sheringham Savoyards

Affiliated to the National Operatic and Dramatic Association





In 1989 I was involved in a little creative activity writing the between-numbers dialogue for our first “Victorian Evening” CANDLELIT CAPERS, where everyone had a name and function and family entanglements were touched on. That was the first occasion on which the Savoyards made themselves something out of not very much. THE MAGIC LOZENGE promises to be on a higher creative level altogether, and Bev and Hazel are to be congratulated on this ground-breaking venture to which we wish every success.
I also salute, with hearty thanks, Ruth on her years as a most efficient compiler of the News Letter, and wish David all the best as he takes over this important job.


Dear Members and Friends,
Uppermost in the minds of Savoyards on reading the above message will be thoughts of our President’s sad loss since the last Newsletter was published.
Dena Poore, an inaugural member of Sheringham Savoyards, offers this tribute.

We were sad to hear of the death of Erith Stables, the dear wife of our President, and our thoughts are with Alan and their family. The inaugural meeting of the Sheringham Savoyards was held in the Stables’ home and from that day Erith became one of the Society’s staunchest supporters. She was one time music–page–turner in chief, later became our Chairman and latterly a Life Member. We remember her infectious laughter in the audience and also her enthusiastic applause, encouraging the rest of the audience to follow suit.
Erith was the welcoming, smiling face when Savoyards in all sorts of guises descended on Garden Road - perhaps to rehearse for one of the shows or as a prospective entrant for the Cromer Festival, to play an instrument with Alan accompanying, to a New Year’s Eve party or simply for a cup of tea.
Erith will be fondly remembered and sadly missed.



We were blessed with (mostly) fair weather for our Barbeque held on Sunday 20th in the impressive garden of Ruth & Mike Robinson. Despite the occasional disappearance of those Formula 1 fans who couldn’t resist checking on the concurrent race a delightful time was had by all - doing what Savoyards do to perfection – chatting while eating and drinking. Thanks were due not just to our host and hostess and those who slaved away over the proverbial hot stove(?) but also to those lady members who produced a great array of delicious salads and desserts - due to their joint refusal to be reimbursed for their offerings the event even made a profit! All in all a great success.

Savoyards once again entered a float in the Sheringham Carnival procession on 6th August. Despite a long wait before the parade began the general consensus of the participants was that it WAS fun to take part. Photos of the event are available from our archivist Hazel Randell.

Earlier than usual for an Autumn show rehearsals started for “The Magic Lozenge” on the 22nd. David Kett and Karen Smith have guided us through the all new score and continue to try to keep us on course even while John McInnes directs our moves, which he started to attempt on 3rd October. The cast are all looking forward to being part of a World Premiere!! We welcome John to our ranks as Producer, and we also welcome the 3 new members we have gained for this show, and hopefully many shows to come.


This was held on the 1st of the month in the Oddfellows Hall, Lifeboat Plain. Although this event was by no means a “full house“ it did attract a good number of members and the odd Friend! Our President in his opening address expressed his gratitude for all the support he had received from the Society over the previous weeks and months. He enjoys his meeting with members in the town where he is brought up to date with news of rehearsals etc. He also said he was looking forward to celebrating our 30th anniversary next year with some original members and some newly arrived.
In her Chairman’s address Ruth Robinson mentioned the many successful events during the last year, both on and off the stage. She read out a letter from John Warburton, our NODA East Councillor, containing much in the way of praise for the production of “Yeomen“ in June, as well as the Society’s hospitality, but also adding a few hints as to how even such a successful production as this might be improved.
In her Treasurer’s report Dena told of a profitable year but warned that expenses of many sorts had risen and will continue to do so. Apart from increasing ticket prices to help counteract this she suggested that your Committee may like to discuss raising Subscription rates before next year.
A donation of £200 to The Parkinson’s Disease Society was approved by the meeting.
Alan Stables expressed his thanks for the gesture.

The following Officers and Committee Members were elected:
Malcolm Poore
Duncan McLaughlin
Pam McLaughlin
Dena Poore
Moira Weller

David Allison, Mike Emery, Nan Smith, Andy Weston, Val Williams, Rip Wright

Malcolm then took over the Chair from Ruth. His first action was to present her with a beautiful plant in recognition of her hard work as Chairman for the last two years. In response Ruth expressed her thanks, not just for the plant, but also for all the help and support she had received from the Society as a whole and her fellow Officers and Committee in particular. She said that she had wished to give something back to the Society in return for the valued friendship she had received from it.
After the business part of the evening, members then embarked on the traditional plate and bottle refreshments to which we have all now become familiar, but this time with the additional experience of attempting to keep up with a G & S Karoake – courtesy of Moira with further input from Hazel & Rip. This certainly was entertaining to behold as various members, and the aforementioned Friend, attempted to match their singing tempo with the machine’s. Undoubtedly the highlight of the evening was a performance of the Lord Chancellor’s Nightmare Song by our beloved President – incredibly up to speed and word perfect of course (no need to read the words!!) The debate still rages as to whether he beat the machine or not. All in all good way to extend the AGM into a social as well as business event. All members are of course able to view the full Minutes on request as I have only mentioned various aspects of them.


Yes, dear Members & Friends, we now have our own web-site. This was set up this month and has already received well over 100 hits and been used as a communication tool to contact Officers of the Society. I will not spoil the fun by telling you all that it contains – far better for you to log on and find out yourselves!
It has been set up by Clive Swetman, known to many as a singer and performer with various groups in Norfolk. I am sure that feedback will be welcomed by him through the site as well as your Committee.

Town Quiz
Our Chairman, accompanied by Bruce Carman and Jon Platten, once more joined battle with the Quizmaster, as well as the other teams, in the opening three team round of this years Town Quiz on Wednesday 22nd but, despite good support as usual, unfortunately they did not progress into the next round, because although they won one contest but they also lost one.



The world premiere of this ground breaking show with words by Hazel Randell and music by Beverley Baker, will be on Friday 28th at Sheringham Little Theatre with an encore on Sat 29th. Friends will find Vouchers for the show with this Newsletter. Do get booking – when did you last get to a World Premiere ?? (let alone get to perform in one!!!) There will be an after-show party in the Hub to which all Members and Friends are of course invited.


AUDITIONS will be held on Friday 5th for those members wishing to do other than Chorus work in the Little Theatre Concert to be held on 31st January 2009. Please contact Malcolm to book your place on the list – he is still anxious to have a goodly number of items from which to choose. Try ‘phoning 01263 824319 or e-mailing

Carol Singing. Once again we have a licence for street entertainment! Rehearsals will take place at Malcolm & Dena’s house on Friday 12th.
Carols for Choirs Book 1 will be available for use by the singers.
The good people of Sheringham will be assailed (or wassailed even ?) with our seasonal renditions from 10am until Noon on Saturday 13th outside Keys Office, as last year.
Proceeds from the collecting box will go to the Quidenham Childrens Hospice.


REHEARSALS for The Sorcerer will start on Friday 9th and AUDITIONS will be held on Friday 23rd. This is a fun show where more or less equal numbers of men and women are needed -- at present, (as is often the case) the men are outnumbered so if any members or Friends can recruit more men everyone will be highly delighted! Perhaps some ex-members can be persuaded out of retirement as well as finding new talent. Advertising will also be taking place with the same aim -- in fact it has already started on our website.

Little Theatre Concert on 31st
Rehearsals for this will be needed –possibly after Friday night Sorcerer rehearsals. Karen will be our accompanist for this show.


Ceilidh Saturday 14th at Gresham Village Hall.
Members and Friends will remember, or have heard about, how much fun the previous ceilidh was. The band will be Rig-A –Jig-Jig again. The entertainment will start at 7.30pm but we will have to do our Cinderella impression again to be out before the stroke of Midnight. As usual refreshments will be D I Y, ie plate & bottle. This venue will hold up to 100 so there is plenty of scope for people to invite friends & relatives (or even friends of friends!)
Cost will be £8 pp. Tickets are available from Val Williams 01263 860499



Our 30th Anniversary Event !!!
As Members and Friends will remember from the last Newsletter this will be on Saturday 16th on The Southern Comfort boat from Horning. At a cost of £20 pp the evening will be a trip, food and a disco. - what a bargain!! Val has taken deposits from about 30 of you but will be happy to take more (£5 pp) at your earliest convenience.


Performances from Tues 10th to Saturday 13th including our first experience of a matinee performance! More information in our next Newsletter in January after the Auditions.


Like all the best opera companies we need to plan ahead and we are pleased to announce that Andy & Julie Weston have agreed to produce the Summer Shows in 2010 and 2011.
A fully staged production of UTOPIA LTD has been a dream of Andy’s for some time but the problem has been that it is a long and wordy piece of work. He and Julie have spent some considerable time in performing delicate surgery, not to mention the odd amputation, on the libretto and score, while keeping the essential elements of the story and music.
Their proposals would trim the show to nearer 2 hrs 30mins than the original 3hrs + with some interesting gender changes among the protagonists in this seldom fully staged work. On this basis your Committee have agreed to their proposals and asked them to produce it in 2010.
With a view to production continuity, as well as the fact that Andy & Julie have also had thoughts about a production of THE MIKADO, they have also been asked to produce that as the 2011 show.

I think that is probably far enough to look ahead for now!!!



Please note that Subscriptions both for Members and Friends were due on 1st September – ie NOW.
Dena will be pleased to receive them from you at your earliest convenience.

Please send them to:
Dena Poore, Malden Cottage, 32A Beeston Common, Sheringham NR26 8ES

They remain as last year:
Joint Membership
Joint Friends

Please note that even if you have not renewed your subscription you receive this News Letter and Vouchers, if a Friend, as a courtesy but no more will be forthcoming if your subs. are not paid by the years end. Please take this notice as a request for payment to save further costs.


Editors Note
This is a new experience for me so please bear with my inability to brighten up this missive with decorations as so beautifully produced by my predecessor. I hope to reintroduce them when and if I gain some IT expertise. The two previous incumbents in this prestigious post are hard acts to follow but I will do my best to keep things ticking over during my tenure of the post. Please let me have any items you wish to insert in the next News Letter, which will be after the auditions in January either personally, by ‘phone 01263 822030, or by e-mail


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