Playgoers Scoop Awards at Gwent Drama League Evening

July 6, 2015

Newport Playgoers were among the winners at the 2015 Gwent Drama League Awards.

The cast of ‘Nunsense’ with their award for Best Overall Production. (PHOTO: PHIL MANSELL)

The cast of ‘Nunsense’ with their award for Best Overall Production. (PHOTO: PHIL MANSELL)

The musical comedy ‘Nunsense’ won the award for Best Overall Production, with Claudia Barnes who played the Mother Superior taking the award for Best Comedy Moment for the routine where she accidentally gets high – with hilarious results.

Claudia Barnes won the award for Best Comedy Moment for her portrayal of Mother Superior who accidentally gets high. (PHOTO: PHIL MANSELL)

Claudia Barnes won the award for Best Comedy Moment for her portrayal of a Mother Superior who accidentally gets high. (PHOTO: PHIL MANSELL)

Pictured with the award for Best Play are local playwright Phil Mansell and his wife Caroline Drewett-Mansell who directed the production. (PHOTO: BOB BROWN)

Pictured with the award for Best Play are local playwright Phil Mansell and his wife Caroline Drewett-Mansell who directed the production. (PHOTO: BOB BROWN)

The award for Best Play went to ‘According to Claudia’ by local playwright Phil Mansell for his story of a family reunion in which skeletons galore come tumbling out of the closet. Several cast members were also nominated for Best Actor awards. The play previously won the Theatre Show Award 2014 presented by entertainment and lifestyle magazine Voice.

A scene from Phil Mansell’s play ‘According to Claudia’. Several cast members were nominated for Best Actor awards. (PHOTO: PHIL MANSELL)

A scene from Phil Mansell’s play ‘According to Claudia’. Several cast members were nominated for Best Actor awards. (PHOTO: PHIL MANSELL)

Alys Rodway won the Best Supporting Actress Award in the youth section for her portrayal of Wendy in DTW's 'Peter Pan'. (PHOTO: PHIL MANSELL)

Alys Rodway won the Best Supporting Actress Award in the youth section for her portrayal of Wendy in DTW’s ‘Peter Pan’. (PHOTO: PHIL MANSELL)

Also among the winners was Alys Rodley of Playgoers’ youth theatre group, Dolman Theatre Works, for her role as Wendy in ‘Peter Pan’. Playgoers New Generation received nominations for best actors and best play for their production of ‘The Canterville Ghost’.

The Adjudicator’s Award went to the Dolman Theatre for providing a wonderful venue where so many productions are staged.

Theatre Manager Lisa Aston-Griffiths with the Adjudicator's Award which went to the Dolman Theatre. (PHOTO: PHIL MANSELL)

Theatre Manager Lisa Aston-Griffiths with the Adjudicator’s Award which went to the Dolman Theatre. (PHOTO: PHIL MANSELL)

The awards evening, held at the Dolman Theatre was a glittering occasion to which all the local drama and musical societies turned out in force to be entertained with songs from some of many productions, and pick up an array of awards from Gwent Drama League adjudicator Alan Hayes.

“It was a great evening, made even more special by my play winning this prestigious award,” said Phil Mansell. “Playgoers received nominations in many of the categories and it can’t have been easy for the adjudicator to pick out the best from some amazing productions.

It’s been another highly successful season for Playgoers who own and run the city’s 400-seat Dolman Theatre. The society is already looking forward to next season which begins in September with ‘Up Pompeii’ the stage version of the show that Frankie Howerd made such a hit on TV. Other forthcoming attractions include ‘The Ladykillers’, based on the classic Ealing comedy, and the stage version of ‘60s favourite ‘The Graduate’.

Playgoers are always seeking new members to work both onstage and behind the scenes to keep the 400-seat Dolman Theatre running. For more information or to book tickets for forthcoming productions call 01633 263670 or visit www.dolmantheatre.co.uk.


Ruth Scoops Acting Awards Galore

July 23, 2012

Ruth Ferguson was named Newport’s best actor when she was presented with the prestigious Webley Award at Newport Playgoers Society’s AGM.

Ruth Ferguson with her awards

Ruth Ferguson is pictured with Playgoers President Richard Dymond and some of the awards won by ‘The Lady in the Van’. (PHOTO: PHIL MANSELL)

Ruth won the coveted award for her portrayal of an eccentric bag lady in the title role of Playgoers’ production of Alan Bennett’s ‘The Lady in the Van’.

It is the latest award recognising Ruth’s outstanding performance as Miss Shepherd, a real life character who “temporarily” parked her van in the Yorkshire playwright’s garden and stayed there for 15 years.

Ruth Ferguson as 'The Lady in the Van'

Ruth Ferguson in her award-winning role as the eccentric Miss Shepherd in ‘The Lady in the Van’. (PHOTO: PHIL MANSELL)

Recently, Ruth won the Gwent Drama League award for best actress and the play also picked up prizes for best decor, best play and best overall production.

“I am really pleased to have won this award,” said Ruth who has been a member of Playgoers for over 30 years. “I now realise that the way to win awards is to play smelly old ladies with double incontinence!”

The Webley Award is presented by Playgoers each year in honour of Thomas Webley, the Society’s first President, who was Principal of Caerleon College, which is now the University of Wales, Newport.

Ruth will be in action on the Dolman stage in Newport Playgoers’ exciting new season which includes ‘Dad’s Army’, ‘Calendar Girls’ and ‘The Hound of the Baskervilles’. The new season opens with Noel Coward’s witty supernatural comedy ‘Blithe Spirit’ on 12th September. To find out more information and book tickets call the Dolman Theatre box office on 01633 263670 or visit www.dolmantheatre.co.uk.