In part to mark the selection of Hull as the City of Culture throughout 2017, and as indicated in the last few newsletters and on the Look Ahead, we have chosen Teechers written by John Godber, who has a long association with the City, as our November production.
Three school leavers, Salty, Hobby and Gail perform to the audience an account of their time in High School (given the name ‘Whitewall’ for their performance), specifically their time with Mr. Nixon, the new drama teacher who ignites their passion for the stage with his idealism and belief that all children should be treated equally. The children mention that the names of the characters have been changed: Mr Nixon’s real name is Mr Harrison, mentioned at the beginning. At the end of the play he leaves Whitewall High School to teach at St George’s, another school with a much better reputation.
Whitewall High School is in a “special priority area, which means it has its fair share of problems”. Jeff Nixon is a socialist, and is determined to better the lot of his average kids. He is tempted, however, by the ‘academic’ atmosphere at the local ‘good’ school, and eventually leaves to teach at St. George’s, although not before making a major difference in the lives of the children. The play outlines many of the problems that new teachers encounter when beginning in the profession, such as a lack of respect, obtrusive support workers and a loss of idealism.
Calling all of our actors or budding actors .. and a keen producer. Our Director – Caron – has the first script and we have just received the licence for the November production, and ordered more scripts, which should be in Brent by early next week.
The audition has been brought forward a week to Sunday 3 Sep at 5:30, venue likely the Stansbury Room, but to be confirmed. Rehearsals will start formally on 17 Sep, but between auditions and then there will be some read-throughs and meetings of the cast as it assembles. Production dates are 16-18 November
The play is designed for a minimum of three actors (who then also play the other smaller parts as part of the play-within-a play which is Teechers), but we hope to increase the number of actors who can play the larger parts and spread the load.
The cast list is below, together with who in a cast of three plays which characters (this helps to manage the script, since you can’t talk to yourself). The exceptions in the original script are the characters of Oggy Moxon and Mr Basford – each of whom is played by each of the three characters during the play.
If that seems complex, well it will be sorted out when we know how many actors are interested! Caron will make sure everyone involved is clear which, and in some cases how many characters, they play.
This is the character list, which shows the wide range of acting expression this play allows. Since it is spawned on the concept of youths playing adults and adults often behaving like youths, the actors’ age is not really relevant to each part. We hope the play might attract members across the age span of SBADS.
The set is sparse and props few, there is a simple lighting demand and some contemporary music; an backstage manager during the play may not be needed. Caron is looking for someone to take on the role of Producer to put this all together with her, while she puts together the actors and the script.
Please don’t wait for the 3rd to let Caron (email@example.com) know of your interest in any role in the play on-stage or off. Auditions are open to members and non-members (though if you participate you will need to join!)
|SALTY||A school leaver, bright and fresh-faced, rather dirty in appearance (also plays Teacher B, Jeff Nixon, Pete Saxon, Oggy Moxon, Mr Basford, Mr Hatton and Deanie)|
|GAIL||Loud-mouthed and bossy, attractive and full of enthusiasm (also plays Teacher A, Ms Maureen Whitham, Oggy Moxon, Mr Basford, Miss Jackie Prime, Barry Wobschall, Dennis, Doug and Mrs Coates)|
|HOBBY||Shy. Should be very large, must be bigger than the other two. She is doing the play despite herself (also plays Mrs Cordelia Parry, Ms Jones, Mr Basford,Ron, Simon “Piggy” Patterson, Oggy Moxon and Mrs Clifton)|
|Mr Jeff “Niko” NIXON||New drama teacher, young and casual, socialist and idealistic|
|MRS PARRY||The Head Mistress, large and loud, a real eccentric|
|MR BASFORD||The Deputy Head, a typical child hater, a nasty piece of work|
|Miss Jackie Prime (later Short)||PE Teacher|
|Ms Maureen WHITHAM||A fussy and hopeless teacher, desperate to leave|
|MS JONES||A moaner, rather fat, someone who wants to leave but no one will employ her|
|Mr Dean "DEANIE"||A teacher who thinks all the kids love him, A bad dancer|
|DOUG||The caretaker, a miserable old man, he hates kids and drama|
|Bobby "OGGY" Moxon||The cock of the school, looks much older than he actually is, the school bully in a modern age|
|PETE Saxon||A large, frightening youth with tattoos, appears foolish|
|MR FISHER||Head of PE|
|BARRY WOBSCHALL||A small boy who never brings his PE kit|
|SIMON "PIGGY" PATTERSON||A boy who is always telling on others; always runs to his lessons|
|RON||A boy who never does PE|
|MR HATTON||Helps with the youth club dance|
|DENNIS||Oggy’s side kick|
|MRS COATES||Head Mistress at Saint George's|
|MRS CLIFTON||Head of Governors at Saint George's|
This amateur production of “Teechers” is presented by special arrangement with
SAMUEL FRENCH, LTD