Preview: Inverurie Herald, 20 April 2001
Teamwork all pays off
A collaboration between an Inverurie dramatic group and an Aberdeen-based collective
of writers bears fruit next Friday (April 27) and Saturday (April 28) when Inverurie
Town Hall is the venue for a play entitled Soul Traders. The Spotlight Theatre
Company, which is based in Inverurie and the Lemon Tree Writers — an informal
group of poets, story writers, novelists and playwrights who have been meeting at
the Lemon Tree in Aberdeen for eight years — have teamed up to conceive, write
and produce the play Soul Traders, which promises a mix of Doric humour and
Haworth Hodgkinson, who is a member of both groups and the chairman of the writers'
group, told Sound and Vision: When I took over the running of the group a year and
a half ago, I realised that whilst discussions around a table were an excellent
way for poets and prose writers to obtain constructive feedback, playwrights needed
something more, so I began organising occasional rehearsed readings of new playscripts.
The logical next step was to try to find a way of carrying scripts through to performance.
I approached a number of local drama groups, suggesting to them that there were a
number of good drama writers in the North-East whose work deserved to be performed.
Spotlight Theatre of Inverurie took up the challenge and I ran a series of workshops
with actors and writers during which we developed a set of characters tailored to
the actors available.
Throughout the winter a team of six of the Lemon Tree Writers worked on the script,
and Spotlight Theatre secured the services of a professional director, Bruce Duncan.
The outcome of the collaboration was Soul Traders, a play with a 14-strong
cast which begins when a mysterious stranger called Shaun parks his car in a field
late at night.
It seems there is a body in the boot of his car, and he plans to bury the body,
but decides to wait until daylight.
When he wakes up in the morning he finds himself in the midst of a car boot sale,
and the dealers and traders are curious as to why he won't open his boot.
Also at the car boot sale we meet the Doric 'wifies' of the Neighbourhood Watch
led by Pat who, for all her vigilance, doesn't realise that her husband is having
an affair with their next door neighbour — but is it an affair of the heart
or an affair of the stomach?
Then there's 16-year-old Tim and his pregnant girlfriend Tamsin, who can't decide
whether or not to keep the baby. Tim's parents are having a clear-out before moving
to their new house, whilst Tamsin's mother is selling off her husband's treasured
possessions. Meanwhile, Derek the dealer is on the lookout for any bargain going
and Mrs Reid the steward desperately tries to keep order at the car boot sale as
the various crises erupt.
Soul Traders will be performed by the Spotlight Theatre Company at Inverurie
Town Hall for two nights. Tickets cost £6, including cheese and wine, and
are available from Pencil N Paper in Inverurie. Proceeds will be donated to the
Strathburn School PTA fund and the curtain goes up at 7.30pm.
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