We know that many of you enjoyed our online performance. It was lovely to be flexing our performing muscles again, so much so that we've decided we can't live online anymore. Although the future remains uncertain, we have decided it's time to get the show back on the road, and have booked our next performance dates, for March 2021.
We'll be working hard with the Pump House to keep our members and audience safe, and will observe local and national guidelines throughout.
We appreciate it's a way to go, and things could change further by the time we get to that stage [pun intended], however we hope you'll once more join us a night of great entertainment.
10 - 13 March 2021
We are currently auditioning our members to perform 'Just the Ticket', a 90 minute comedy, by Peter Quilter, who wrote The Actress which our group performed a couple of years ago.
The show allows the audience to accompany Susan on her solo, nostalgic journey from the airport to Australia as she retraces steps she took with her girlfriends when she was 20. Along the way she reflects on life, love, loneliness, friendship and trials of growing older.
We obviously have some way to go in terms of organising our cast, rehearsing and preparing for the performances but we will continue to keep you updated through this newsletter and social media. We will especially let you know when the box office open and you can book tickets.
Please watch this space and we hope to welcome you back to the Pump House when we can.
Belmont continues to review the national and local guidelines for performances and while we do not have a show in hand at the moment, we hope we can restart some level of play reading or performance activity in the coming weeks.
In the meantime, we are delighted to share another online performance with you - the sequel to The Lion and Albert.
Following the positive feedback to our first online performance, our members have collaborated virtually to pull together another film. It's bigger, with props and more people than before!
We hope you once more enjoy it as much as we did putting it together.
You can find the film on our YouTube channel, or by clicking here.
The first version is also still available.
During recent months we have continued to review national and local guidance, and based on the current situation have made the difficult decision to cancel our slot at the Pump House in October. Our committee agreed that we did not want to put the health of our members and audience at any risk and as such will now look towards our next live performance happening in 2021.
We know that this may disappoint many of you (as it has our members), however we feel this is the safest option at this time. We have been in touch with those who had tickets moved over from our previous planned performance dates in May and will continue to monitor the rules relating to live performances.
We are however considering options for smaller performances, that may work better in the future, as well as working on the sequel to the Lion and Albert (first performance still available on our YouTube page) and hope to share this with you all later this month.
Within Belmont we continue to do what we can to support our members at this time. This has included sending newsletters with updates on what people have been up to as lockdown eases and some of our group are exploring the options for socially distanced get togethers.
Based on member feedback we recently held our first virtual AGM, giving our members the chance to share their views and have their questions answered.
This also included re-electing our committee, with the exception of our long-serving Treasurer, Malcolm. Many of you will be familiar with Malcolm from his stints on the box office over the years. While he will remain a member, he has decided to pass on the baton and we would like to take this opportunity to share our thanks to Malcolm for all his efforts on behalf of us, and our audience, over the last two decades. Belmont is better for his involvement and we appreciate the handover he is now giving to his replacement.
Like some of you, we are missing the theatre, and have suffered some sad losses in recent weeks. Despite these challenging times, we have been doing what we can to support our group. This has included providing all of our members and patrons with additional time on their annual membership, for no extra charge. Our Treasurer also offered extra support to anyone who wished to continue their membership but was struggling due to financial hardship. We have also had online get togethers, shared lockdown hints and tips, and will very soon have our first online members quiz night.
Alongside the above, a lot of effort went into rearranging our performance of We Happy Few for October. The decision for whether this goes ahead or not is out of our hands at the moment but we’ll continue to monitor the situation, following national and local guidance.
We have also made a contribution to the Pump House theatre itself - letting it keep our May deposit of £373, as a small gesture of support during this time.
And we haven’t forgotten our audience either. As we type this update, members of our group are working on an online monologue which we hope to share with you in the future. It’s just a little something for us to perform, and you to enjoy. Keep an eye out for the next update - or follow us on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram too.
In line with Government advice, Belmont took the decision to postpone performances of We Happy Few (originally scheduled for May) until October.
At Belmont we take the safety of our audience, and our volunteers, seriously, and whilst we would have loved to have continued to prepare for a May show, we knew we must take this decision.
Our aim is to perform We Happy Few, a tribute to the 75th anniversary of VE Day, on 21 - 24 October.
We will therefore look to perform Pygmalion (which was planned as our October show) in 2021, subject to the availability of our director.
We have updated our booking page to reflect the change to We Happy Few, and either processed refunds (for TicketSource bookers) or contacted individuals to discuss refunds/transfer of seats (non-TicketSource bookers).
We will, of course, continue to review this situation, and update our members and mailing list if anything should change further.
We wish all of our audience well - stay safe and sanitised.
Across fifteen performances in 2019, our committed team performed the touching 'Bothered and Bewildered', humorous 'Be My Baby' and rounded off with the thought-provoking 'Love In Idleness'.
Each show was well-attended, with great feedback from audiences and critics alike.
Belmont Theatre received recognition with a bumper set of awards and shortlistings at two prestigious ceremonies. Many congratulations to all the nominees and winners!
At the Barnet Festival, 'Bothered and Bewildered' was our nomination, and we were recognised as follows:
The Adjudicator's Award Bothered and Bewildered Win
Best Actor in a Supporting Role Charlie Seddon, as Jim/James Win
Best Actress in a Leading Role Carole Baynes, as Irene Shortlisted
Best Actress in a Supporting Role Louisa Swiergon, as Young Irene/Shelley Shortlisted
At the annual National Operatic and Dramatic Association (NODA) Awards, we scooped awards for our 2018 performance of 'Journey’s End', as well as 'Bothered and Bewildered':
Best Male Elliott Campion, as Captain Stanhope in Journey’s End Win
Best Female Carole Baynes, as Irene in Bothered and Bewildered Win
Scenic Award Journey’s End Shortlisted
Poster Design Journey’s End Winners of
In addition to the above, with the donations of our audience, including involvement in our show raffles throughout the year, we raised over £750 for Watford's Peace Hospice Care, supporting their excellent work.
Thank you to everyone who contributed.