Do pop over to https://www.onlinefringefestival.com/ to watch and find out more.
We are thrilled to announce that you can now catch our 2019 production of William Shakespeare's Macbeth, performed at Brixham Theatre in Feb 2019 (the same performance which went on to win a theatre award in New York), online for two weeks (starting now!) as part of Online Fringe Festival , an online theatre festival dedicated to sharing great theatre during the 2020 Covid lockdown.
Do pop over to https://www.onlinefringefestival.com/ to watch and find out more.
Internationally award-winning Brixham theatre company brings Shakespeare's classic Midsummer Night's Dream to life, defying lockdown in an international, online performance, with actors performing from their homes.
“The course of true love never did run smooth ”
A Midsummer Night's Dream, Act 1 scene 1
Shakespeare's classic comedy, is brought to life in a lockdown production, by a theatre company based in Brixham, South Devon.
Already in rehearsals for the live shows, with a national tour being booked for the live shows, when the COVID-19 pandemic and lockdown, caused postponement and cancellation of live shows for several months, for every theatre in the UK. Of course, many theatres, both venues and production companies had no choice but to close, and work for professional actors temporarily collapsed.
The South Devon Players decided to resist the trend, and as well as postponing (not cancelling!) the usual shows to such time as when it is safe for theatre venues to reopen, the Players decided to create online performances, in which the actors come together to perform online from the safety of their own homes. This in itself has not been easy, as many people in the team, have had to learn new technology & software, and find ways to make it work on household electronics, with the cast and crew working from their lockdown locations mainly in south Devon but also sheltering in place spread across the UK, as well as the Republic of Ireland, and Los Angeles in California.
The first of these online performances, is a full length, costumed production of William Shakespeare's classic romantic comedy; A Midsummer Night's Dream. Keeping as close as is possible to the originally planned steampunk styling of the live shows, the members of the team are dilligently rehearsing and learning software online, creating costumes and makeup styles, to create this show, and develop an entirely new way to present theatre using modern technology during this time.
Following this first performance, the Players are also planning further online shows, performing Shakspeare and other classic dramas, in the same way.
The South Devon Players Theatre and Film Company, are developing a proud history of Shakespeare productions, as part of their focus on historical and classical dramas. In 2019, their production of Macbeth, was booked for a second tour and won an international theatre award in New York for its professionalism and creativity. Laura Jury, the director of that production of Macbeth, & many of the Player's shows, and founder of the theatre company, has returned to lead this new project. Laura has also recently been selected to appear in an online Shakespeare project by the Globe Theatre in London. The South Devon Players were founded in the winter of 2005-6, on the proceeds of a carboot sale, to create professional opportunities for local actors, and has flourished ever since; previously winning national and regional arts awards, including the national Epic Award 2017 for England, a national arts award celebrating creativity and innovation in grassroots arts. Based in Brixham, the Players primarily specialise in researched historical theatre productions and old “Classics”.
William Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream will be broadcast on the evening of May 30th 2020, as a ticketed event online, with tickets costing £5 each. All details on how to book tickets, and receive the online viewing links, are available at the company's website www.southdevonplayers.com.
We were very sad to hear today, of the passing of someone who was a fantastic member of our team, Don Percival. A super actor, and for a while, the company treasurer, many years ago, before he moved from Brixham to a new life in Cambodia. We heard that he passed away peacefully last night.
Don was not only a great member of the team, but an adventurous spirit. Aside from being an actor, he was also an amazing scuba-diver, and in his youth a rguby player. We explored the moors and discovered all new prehistoric carvings on a Cornish together. Don will be very sadly missed.
Our company founder, Laura Jury, recently entered a Shakespeare project run by the Globe Theatre.
Her "angry drunk" Hamlet monologue was one of those picked for the Globe Theatre's Shakespeare Solo / Shakespeare from quarantine project - and there she is in the header image (middle of the far left column, holding the vodka bottle). :)
Considering that the Globe is pretty much as prestigious as you can get when it comes to Shakespeare...that is quite a feat.
You can view the link below at:
Laura's original audition video can be viewed here.
Apologies for the quiet as we have worked on rearranging auditions, looking at new ways of working, and looking at ways to respond to Covid-19.
To clarify; that is now done. We have agreed on ways to keep our auditions for Jack The Ripper open as sheduled, as well as opening auditions for an online "lockdown" performance of Macbeth.
The big change is that for the time of lockdown (and, if there are any especial demographics that need to isolate for longer), we will be accepting online self-tape auditions. These will have the same requirements as our usual "in-person" auditions - and should the lockdown be safely lifted before the Jack the Ripper auditions in July, then we will revert to our normal "in-person" castings.
We also decided to create a lockdown "online" project, which is a full performance of Macbeth - yes, that show we won international awards for last year and had to tour twice because public demand was so huge. Most of the cast are returning, though we do have a handful of roles open to cast, so if you would like to join us, the details are all below. The great thing about the online Macbeth project? It doesnt matter where you are, as long as you have a digital device running Zoom, and are a strong reliable actor.
(As Jack the Ripper will be live performances at venues (once lockdown is over!) our usual restriction of your needing to be based in South Devon, applies to Jack The Ripper though!)
The usual arrangements of profitshare (until such time as we can find funding or sponsors for full wages, behind the scenes, our admin team are working daily on this!) plus portfolio material (recordings, photos etc) all hold as unchanged.
All our current casting and audition information is over at our AUDITION PAGE
If lockdown continues, there are also a number of other smaller projects that can be done online, that are in the works - and we would love to stay in touch with you; so, if you would like to keep informed on upcoming castings and projects, do please either follow our FACEBOOK PAGE or join our PUBLIC FACEBOOK GROUP
And here is the weekly update!
First of all, we hope you're all keeping well and safe!
So, behind the scenes we have been battling away, looking at new ways of develoing our work.
1) The VE day film shot just before lockdown, is into post-production with a lovely contact of ours in Ohio, USA, and will be released in the early summer, although the VE Day commemoration events are, of course, cancelled.
2) We hope to have the first of the children's audio-books available online by the end of the week. This is a project where our actors collaborate with Southwest authors, on producing readings of thier books. The first book will be a wonderful short childrens story by our very own Alicja Bagier.
3) We are currently setting the dates and planning for online readings of both A Midsummer Night's Dream and Macbeth, which will go ahead at the end of May/ Beginning of June, subject to peoples availibility and equipment.
4) The open auditions in July for Jack The Ripper will take place, using online media if lockdown is still in place or people still need to self-isolate; so that date is unchanged, though the format of the auditions will be adjusted to the needs of the times.
5) We are in the process of moving the show dates for A Midsummer Night's Dream to late August/ Early September,. Obviously venues are struggling as much as we are to try to second guess when times will be better, so it is taking a while to get things all worked out. The Jack the Ripper dates seem to all be fine at this point.
6) Although funding streams of course are also hugely affected by the Covid-19 outbreak, we are still working hard behind the scenes on trying to locate funding streams which will be able to lead to our actors and crew gaining full wages for prductions, as an upgrade from the current profit-share situation.
As always, we are online every day, so if you have any questions, etc, please get in touch!
This evening launches the first of our projects to try to generate remote online work for at least some of our wonderful self-employed actors and creatives, who have lost their usual work in theatre, film, and TV during the corona-virus crisis.
We are a nationally, and internationally, awardwinning team, now making our expertise available to help those who are now studying from home. Our members who have current DBS clearance, are available to teach both adults and children, while the rest of us are available to teach adults. This can be done via Zoom, Skype, Messenger or email.
There is a fee for this service, because this is an attempt to generate work for actors and creatives who, as self-employed, have lost part or all of their incomes but not been eligible for some of the government bailouts for those who have been in regular employment.
EVERY PENNY they earn is directly forwarded to them - this is helping real, dedicated people pay their bills and buy food at these times.
We have a wide variety of subjects, from basic to degree level:
- Drama/ theatre
- English (including English as a foreign language)
- Teaching (teacher training - may be of use to homeschooling parents)
- Expressive arts
We may take on some more tutors with additonal subjects/ agegroups - if seeking a tutor for a subject/ level that is not listed on our Online Tutoring Service, please contact us and enquire.
DISCOVER OUR ONLINE TUTORING SERVICE HERE
Shows & Performance dates:
Brixham - As you may have seen, most theatres have closed for the time being (our home venue Brixham Theatre is closed until May, as things stand). We have resceduled our performances of A Midsummer Night's Dream there for August (details now updated on our Box Office page).
Brixham Brixfest - our excerpt performance of acts 2 & 3 of A Midsummer Night's Dream at Brixfest in May, is cancelled, as Brixfest, an annual festival celebrating local arts, culture and business itself is cancelled. We will be working with them to perform in 2021 - discussions have already commenced
Plymouth - We are planning to reschedule oour performance st Stoke Damerel Church in Plymouth also to August, but we are currently awaiting a reply from the churchwarden to discuss new dates. When this occurs, all tickets bought for the current date will be honoured, or can be refunded (no quibble), if the new date does not suit.
Bristol - We have discussed with Bristol Shakespeare Festival, who are working on the best case scenario to run still in July. Both the festival and the venue are very happy to have us, and so as things stand, this date will go ahead. If we are forced to postpone, we will postpone until later in August/ September, and then perform "under our own steam".
We are also exploring the possibility of online broadcasts and readings/ performances.
The vast majority of our rehearsals have now moved online, to protect the health of our actiors and crew; using the video-conferencing programm / app, Zoom. Cast and crew should stay in regular contact via email or Facebook with the team, as we send the conference links out to everyone on a twice-weekly basis, and send out updates about online work opportunities for actors for our team.
Castings for Jack the Ripper
Our audition date in late July, remains as-is. We hope that the worst of the crisis will be over by then, but if it is not, we will be looking at alternate ways to cast the show and send out scripts etc to cast. Please keep an eye on our news, social media and the auditions page for any updates. People who have emailed us will be updated as well.
Making online work
In this current crisis, most work for actors and crew has dried up - even big TV series and film shoots have cancelled. This leaves the nations entertainers unable to pay rent or the bills. We are doing our best to help our team with creating various online work opportunities. All we can do is but try, and do our best, rather than giving up.
Our first opportunity for our team is offering online tutoring for adults and children; chiefly in drama and English, but also in other subjects as well, by an expert team of creatives. We are in the process of setting up, but expect to have it done open for business by Sunday March 21st 2020. You can find it at ONLINE TUTORING SERVICE. In the interim, if you would like to be contacted as soon as this service is live, please email us on email@example.com.
You or your loved ones will be able to access expert tutoring, and also support some of our nations entertainers and creatives, during this hard time.
Updated by our managing director,