The Riverside Players is a unique amateur theatre company. It was formed in 1951 by former students of the Central School of Speech and Drama in order to perform a play, touring the villages of the Home Counties, during the summer holidays. The idea became an annual fixture, incorporating the friends and families of those originally involved, and it soon grew to the point where moving about the country became impractical and we now perform our production in one location.
In the past, we have performed at venues which have included Culham, Stamford, Bognor Regis, Bloxham, Pangbourne, Chipping Norton and Windsor. This year we are delighted to be returning for our fourth year to Rendcomb College, which is set in the beautiful countryside near Cirencester.
Following a lot of preparatory work throughout the previous 12 months by the whole company, we arrive on the first day ready to create the production. While the actors are fine-tuning rehearsals, other departments are building the set, making costumes, rigging lights and making props. Anyone with a few hours “spare” gets on the road, or the telephone, to assist the publicity team in selling tickets. This leads up to a technical, and then dress rehearsal, followed by a run of 4 shows including a matinee performance. On the final day, we pack up, say our farewells and return to our normal lives, looking forward to returning again in a year’s time.
The whole experience is exhilarating, stimulating, satisfying, exhausting and thoroughly enjoyable. The Riverside Players has grown as a company, as a result of members bringing their families along, and have introduced people whom we believe would enjoy the experience, and contribute to the company. Many of us return year after year and lifelong friendships have been formed. We come from all walks of life; from school teachers to engineers, surgeons and nurses, and IT specialists & Company Directors. It is not uncommon for three generations of the same family to be participating in a show in a variety of different guises and this year will be no exception to that rule. Why not come and have a picnic in the beautiful grounds of Rendcomb College before the performance and join us for a fabulous evening of entertainment afterwards.