Good evening fellow Outsiders and thank you for the effort you
have made to come to this evenings A.G.M. I would like to begin by thanking my
predecessor, Barbara, for all the hard work and commitment that she brought to the role of Chair.
She is a truly hard act to follow!
I don't habitually look at horoscopes but just before taking on
this role I happened to glimpse my horoscope in the North West Evening Mail which said :
"You will be asked to assume a thankless task. Be wary about accepting this
offer even if there is a lot of pressure to do so. Ordering others around will cause
resentment. If members of the team don't fall in line - dismiss them!"
Fortunately it hasn't been necessary to have recourse to such draconian measures.
Indeed I have had cause to feel extremely grateful for all the hard work, commitment and assistance I have received from members of the Committee.
This is the point where I say that it would be invidious for me to single out any one individual and then go on to do precisely that! In particular, I would like to express immense gratitude to Emma in her role as Secretary. She has worked with characteristic diligence and efficiency to keep the "show on the road" - all the more creditable given the huge demands of her day job.
In addition I would like to thank Pat for her sterling contribution to getting things done including, of course, her role as Treasurer. I shall talk about play readings a little later but I would like to thank Hannah for her considerable efforts in sorting out various play readings.
I would also like to thank Tony for the many things he has done over the last year which includes directing and sorting things out in the new store and in connection with the trailer.
Much the same applies to Duncan in his role as director and capacity to sort out various matters for the Society. To have had our committee meetings hosted by John, Hannah and Emma has been greatly appreciated.
Finally a big thank you to John who has been typically indefatigable in his efforts to promote Ulverston Outsiders in a variety of ways which has made a notable contribution to the way that things have gone. If I have left anybody out which is highly likely then I apologise for any distress caused.
Doubtless I might be hearing from somebody's solicitor or indeed directly from a
member who is a solicitor!
I believe that this year we have experienced a successful year building on the
success of last year and, indeed, previous years. Both "The 39 Steps" as well as
"And Then There Were None" were well received and, gratifyingly, this was
underlined by them providing us with healthy financial returns.
The casts of the plays are to be complimented for their efforts as indeed are the directors of the plays - Tony and Duncan respectively .
In addition I would like to pay tribute to the commendable efforts of the many people who make such a huge contribution to our productions 'behind the scenes'. Without them we simply couldn't get our plays put
on. I never cease to admire all their hard work
.So I'd like to thank - in no particular order - Daniel, Sammy, Maggie, Ian, Roger, Brenda, Jayne, Steve and Geoff.
Again, if I have missed anybody out (which is quite likely) then profound apologies. It was also nice to see Adrian 'returning to the fold'; in recent times.
While on the subject of supporting productions, I also recognise the role that
Society members play in coordinating and providing Front of House Staff. I'd like to thank all those who have participated in this during the last year.
Volunteers are needed for our next production from November 19th to 22nd, so please contact Barbara to offer your services. I would also like to mention that Adam Atkinson has been nominated for the second year in a row for an acting award which comes as no surprise given the superb performances he regularly provides in our productions.
So our next production will be 'Woman in Mind' by Alan Ayckbourn, directed by
Jean Hunt, to run from November 19th to November 22nd I understand that
rehearsals are going well.
Hopefully it will attract good audiences and receive good
support from members of the Society.
As referred to previously in this report, play readings have taken place throughout the year with various plays being considered as potential future productions. These include : 'A Christmas Carol' by Patrick Barlow', 'Bothered and Bewildered' by Gail Young. We also read a play written by our very own Ann Thomson, 'Adam Bede'.
As regards our Spring play, the Committee is pleased to confirm that the Outsiders production in April 2020 will be Arthur Miller 'The Crucible', to be directed by Steve Carrick (who is an outsider but not an Outsider).
It has been good to forge links with the Big King pub in Ulverston as it is colloquially known. I believe that being able to access its upper room has enhanced the social side of events such as play readings.
Looking to the future, I would like to think that we shall continue to explore how we can perhaps do more, involving putting plays on in the community and not just confining our output to the Coronation Hall, good though that is . I certainly see our continuing to use the latter venue as an important contribution on our part to keeping it integral to the cultural scene in Ulverston.
I think that using various venues as well as settings such as the King's and presenting different sorts of drama such as doing "Script in Hand" out in the community will enhance our profile and help recruitment. It might extend the number of people willing to try their hand in participating in what the Society does.
I certainly enjoyed taking part in such productions even though it consisted of me lying flat on my back on the floor of "The Old Friend's" pub which, let me try to reassure fellow members, has been the first time that this has ever happened in any circumstances irrespective of thespian demands!
I know that when I make a comparison between being an Ulverston Outsider and being a part of a family, it might seem a bit of a risky analogy to some (depending on people's experience of family life). But for me when I say being part of this Society makes me feel part of a family, it is an entirely positive comparison. In my experience it is a wonderful thing to work together to provide entertainment for the people of Ulverston and feel a sense of belonging in doing so. I feel very lucky to have felt the benefit of such an experience and feel grateful to be part of something which is so fulfilling.
Thank you to everybody involved in such a worthwhile enterprise and may the coming year bring the kind of success and satisfaction to which we all aspire.
At the Annual General Meeting on Sunday October 13th, both the Chairperson and Secretary stood down.
We are glad to announce that Hannah Mitchell and Rob O'Hara were unanimously elected as Chairperson and Secretary respectively.'