Our February meeting was held in the school on a remarkably mild evening, when Bridget conducted a short service.
Marion welcomed our speaker, Mr Mike Law from Norden, near Rochdale, who came to speak about the ‘Curtain Theatre’ in Rochdale.
The Theatre began in 1924, when a common interest in theatre work drove two friends to think about the possibility of creating a local theatre in their home town of Rochdale. At that time there were cinemas and Sunday School shows put on by local people, but no proper theatre.
Gradually, support for the theatre idea grew through friends and acquaintances, and a tenency of a hut near Rochdale Railway was secured. It was decided to call the group the ‘Curtain Theatre’.
At that time, a Business Director and a Drama Director were appointed to keep things on a simple system. This is still how the Theatre Group is run, along with many patrons and supporters to deal with rents, hall payments, costume hire, ticket sales and advertising expenses, to ensure that the theatre remains self-supporting.
In August 1925, an advert was inserted in the local paper announcing their first production – Three One Act Plays. Gradually, the theatre went from strength to strength, and so in 1930 they left their hut and moved to new premises – with seating for 121!
Amazingly, almost a hundred years later, the theatre is still run, with support, by two directors with some Trustees, who meet twice a year.
During each year, 5 plays are produced – each with 6 weeks rehersal time and 12 night performances for each play.
Their next production will be ‘Macbeth’, with the complete text. Support, subscriptions and donations are increasing and the theatre is hired by amateur groups, children’s groups from local schools – so the theatre is used all year round.
Mr Law concluded his talk with a few anecdotes about the theatre and a monologue entitled “Albert and the Jubilee Coin”.
Mrs Joan Feeley thanked Mr Law for a very informative and enjoyable talk.
Programmes & Dates 2014-15
- June 17th: Outing and Meal tba
- July 15th: Veronica Walker “Dickens’ Children”
- Aug 19th: Day Out tba
- Sept 16th: Gordon Bartley “Iceland – Land of Ice” Fire”
- Oct 21st: Social Evening
- Nov 18th: Vicar “Royal Chaplains in the First World War”
- Dec 2nd: Christmas Party
- Jan 20th: Joe Walk “Guyana – Land of Many Waters”
- Feb 17th: Margaret Whittaker “Memories of a Childhood in India
- Mar 17th: A.G.M.
About the Mothers’ Union
The Mothers’ Union is a world-wide society and its objectives are:
to uphold Christ’s teaching on the nature of marriage and promote its wider understanding
to encourage parents to bring up their children in the faith and life of the church
to promote conditions in society favourable to stable family life and the protection of children
to help those whose family life has met with adversity
The Mothers’ Union Prayer
We thank you for you love so freely given to us all.
We pray for families around the world.
Bless the work of the Mothers’ Union as we seek to share your love through the encouragement, strengthening and support of marriage and family life.
Empowered by your spirit, may we be unified in prayer and worship, and in love and service reach out your hands across the world.
In Jesus’ name AMEN