Category Archive: People

We’re recruiting… university placements

Sadly, we’re coming to the end of a fabulous three months with our current university placements Sonia Martins and Charlotte Young who are back to the text books in the new year.

However, this does mean that we’re on the lookout for some more brilliant students who want to learn about how a theatre company works from the inside to join Team PP’s Production and Administration Departments.

Does that sound like you? Great. Here’s some more info on how to get involved…

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WHAT WOULD I BE DOING?

You can choose to join either the Administration or Production Department supporting the teams on everything from open auditions and literary submissions to marketing meetings and play text proofing.

Have a look at the sample job descriptions on our website for more of an idea but do bear in mind that these can be flexible depending on your particular fields of interest and Paines Plough’s current needs.

“There’s not really a better place to be… They gave me a platform where I could grow as an artist and a theatre-maker, and I wouldn’t be going to New York without them.”

Hugo Timbrell, Production Placement 2015-16
Hugo is now managing the New Works Lab at Playwrights Horizons

WHEN WOULD I BE DOING IT?

– Placements last three months and you will be in PPHQ 3-5 days per week, subject to your personal study requirements, 10am-6pm with a one-hour break for lunch.

– We offer £10 per day worked to cover travel expenses, as well as occasional theatre trips and touring opportunities.

– You must be over 18 and in full- or part-time study. We don’t mind what you’re studying as long as you have a love of theatre and an interest in learning about new writing and touring.

HOW DO I APPLY?

Please send a CV and short (no more than one page) covering letter detailing your experience, why you are interested in Paines Plough and what you hope to gain from the placement to simone@painesplough.com.

Application deadline 10am on Monday 12 December
Interviews Thursday 15 December
Placement dates Three consecutive months within the period January-July 2017, 3-5 days per week

If these dates are not quite suitable for your course, please do send in your application anyway as we will be open to discussing alternatives.

We look forward to hearing from you!

Forward Theatre: Genesis

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Our brilliant Associate Company, Forward Theatre Project, are touring their new show GENESIS this autumn. Artistic Director, Charlotte Bennett, tells us what it’s all about…

In 2013, I met a brilliant, inspiring woman called Morag Siller.

Morag was an actress, had incurable breast cancer and was the patron of charity Prevent Breast Cancer. She told me about this small but radical organisation; the UK’s only charity to solely focus on breast cancer prevention, which had started with a vision of finding an alternative way to achieve a breast cancer free future – and I was blown away.

Morag wanted to create a play to raise awareness of prevention and asked if I would work with her. We wanted to look at how we could reach not only scientific minds but non-scientific ones by telling the human stories behind the science. And so myself and playwright Frazer Flintham, interviewed patients and scientists to create a new play: GENESIS, which tells a story about genetic testing for breast cancer.

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As part of ‘tooling up’ we spent hours ensuring we understood the science and the terms (the sort of stuff that if you are a non-science bod make you want to bolt). We know how to tell human stories, but understanding the science was the real challenge. It was hard but GLORIOUS. And the support from the brilliant staff at Prevent Breast Cancer empowered us to make a play that is now as scientifically informed as it is theatrically crafted.

Morag passed away in April. She was a woman who campaigned right to the end of her life to bring the science of this charity into the fore of the conversation about a breast cancer free future. And she was also a brilliant actress who recognised the ability of theatre to have conversations with audiences about difficult things like genetic testing by using humour, drama and story. And so we make this one for her.

And now here we are, rehearsing this important piece of theatre in Manchester. We premiere at The Lowry, Salford. We then tour to Soho Theatre, London, then to Cumbria, Preston and Doncaster.

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Booking details are here:

11th – 12th November The Lowry (8pm, 2.30pm and 8pm) Tickets £12 / £10 concessions

15th – 19th November Soho Theatre (7pm, Sat matinee 4pm) Tickets £16 / £14 concessions

22nd November Beggar’s Theatre Cumbria (7.30pm) Tickets £10 / £7 concessions

23rd November  Preston Continental  (8pm) Tickets £8 / £6 concessions

24th November Cast Doncaster (7.45pm) Tickets £10.50 / £9 concessions

GENESIS is supported by funding from Arts Council England, the Teale Charitable Trust, the Richard Carne Trust, Talbot Validus, the Granada Foundation, the Unity Theatre Trust, the Royal Victoria Hall Foundation, Morag Siller, other private donors, and our crowdfund backers.

Recruitment: Work Placements

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Anna Himali Howard Trainee Director 2016 (Cred. Helen Murray)

We are currently recruiting for autumn 2016 university placements in the Production and Administration teams. Please see below for more information on the scheme and how to apply.

WORK PLACEMENTS

We offer a flexible programme of work placements designed to support the study of students on university and drama school theatre courses at a BA or MA level.

Content
You can choose to work in either the Administration or Production team supporting the teams as described in the sample job descriptions below. These may be altered on discussion of your particular fields of interest and Paines Plough’s current needs.

Timeline
Placements last three months and you will be in PPHQ 3-5 days per week, subject to your personal study requirements, 10am-6pm with a one-hour break for lunch.

Expenses
We offer £10 per day worked to cover travel expenses, as well as occasional theatre trips and touring opportunities.

“There’s not really a better place to be… They gave me a platform where I could grow as an artist and a theatre-maker, and I wouldn’t be going to New York without them.”

Hugo Timbrell, Production Placement 2015-16 Hugo is now managing the New Works Lab at Playwrights Horizons

HOW TO APPLY

Please send a CV and one-page covering letter detailing your experience, why you are interested in Paines Plough and what you hope to gain from the placement to simone@painesplough.com.

Application deadline Thursday 25 August
Interviews Noon Thursday & Friday 1 & 2 September
Start date Wednesday 7 September
End date Friday 16 December

If these dates are not quite suitable for your course, please do send in your application anyway as we will be open to discussing alternatives.

 

ADMIN PLACEMENT

The Admin Placement works closely with the Administrator and Finance & Admin Assistant supporting day to day administration of the company the company and will have the opportunity to take responsibility for the co-ordination of specific projects. Duties include but are not limited to:

Office Administration:

-  To act as a welcoming and helpful first point of contact for all enquiries and visitors, either in person, by telephone or by email
-  To support the Administrator with the co-ordination of meetings, including minuting, purchase and preparation of refreshments, welcoming guests, etc
-  To be responsible for general office management including routine correspondence, filing and archiving, opening and distributing mail, general housekeeping, monitoring and ordering stationery supplies and consumables when running low
-  To work with the Finance & Admin Assistant on the administration and promotion of rehearsal space including welcoming hire clients, delivering H&S briefings, marketing the facilities and co-ordinating bookings
-  To manage the invitations database and regularly inform the company of recent invitations to other productions
-  To co-ordinate and arrange theatre tickets for permanent and freelance staff
-  To arrange couriers and other deliveries as necessary
-  To liaise with suppliers and visitors as appropriate
-  To provide general assistance to all staff as necessary without neglecting core duties

Press, Marketing and Digital:

-  To assist with the maintenance of the company website
-  To assist with the proofing of newsletter and website copy
-  To assist with the maintenance of company CRM and database, Salesforce
-  To collate audience feedback (on and offline) in the company’s central database
-  To generate reports on this information as required

Literary and Open Auditions:

-  To be responsible for company’s unsolicited script submission processes and databases, being the first point of contact for the writers, informing them of the progress of their submission, maintaining the script database and distributing scripts to be read
–  To support the Administrator and Finance & Admin Assistant with the Open Auditions processes and systems, arranging venues, coordinating the publicity of the Open Auditions, managing communication with actors, arranging audition timeslots and acting as front of house as necessary

General:

-  To attend company previews, events and press nights as required
-  To be an enthusiastic advocate of Paines Plough and have a thorough understanding of the company’s mission, vision and aims
-  To uphold and implement Paines Plough’s policies including but not limited to equal opportunities, health and safety and the staff handbook

PERSON SPECIFICATION

Candidates need to possess the following attributes/skills to be considered for the position of Admin. Placement:

Essential knowledge, skills and experience:
-  An enthusiasm for theatre, particularly new writing
–  A friendly and welcoming attitude
– Excellent oral and written communication skills
– A capacity to operate and understand IT packages and databases (affinity with Microsoft Word, Excel, Outlook, PowerPoint)

Desirable knowledge, skills and experience:
-  Experience of working in an administrative role
-  An understating of the theatre industry as a whole, in particular the subsidised sector

 

PRODUCTION PLACEMENT

Responsible to: Assistant Producer

The Production Placement works closely with the Production team, supporting the delivery of Paines Plough’s full programme of work. Duties include but are not limited to:

Productions:
The following components of the role sit across all Paines Plough’s programme (Small Scale, Mid Scale and Roundabout):

-  To have an understanding of the company’s programme and activities
-  To assist the Production Assistant to book any travel and accommodation required for Creative and
– Production Teams as well as Paines Plough’s core staff for each production
-  To assist with the co-ordination of production meetings, including collation and distribution of papers, preparation of refreshments, greeting guests
-  To support in all administrative elements of the casting process, including availability checks, scheduling meetings and maintaining lists.
-  To compile production contact sheets, print scripts and general production office administration

Press, Marketing and Digital:
-  To assist with obtaining biographies and any other relevant programme information from members of the Cast, Production and Creative Teams
-  To assist in the compilation and printing of play texts and programmes
-  To assist with the proofing of promotional print/copy and play texts when necessary
-  To assist in the compilation of Marketing Packs and Schedules for each production
-  To collate and input audience data and feedback from tour venues
– Insights, The Big Room and Open Auditions
-  To assist with administrating the company’s unsolicited script submission processes and databases,
-  To assist with administrating Open Auditions, co-ordinating the publicity of the Open Auditions, managing communication with actors and arranging audition timeslots

General:
-  To attend weekly company meetings
-  To attend company previews, events and press nights as required
-  To be an enthusiastic advocate of Paines Plough and have a thorough understanding of the company’s mission, vision and aims
– To work with Paines Plough’s core staff in all pastoral aspects of production and day to day running of the company

PERSON SPECIFICATION

Candidates need to possess the following attributes/skills to be considered for the position of Production Placement:

Essential knowledge, skills and experience:
-  An enthusiasm for theatre, particularly new writing
-  An ability to work well within a small team
-  Excellent oral and written communication skills
-  A capacity to operate and understand IT packages and databases (affinity with Microsoft Word, Excel, Outlook, PowerPoint)

Desirable knowledge, skills and experience:
-  Experience of working in the arts
-  An awareness of the current theatrical landscape in the UK

 

We look forward to hearing from you,
Team PP.

Recruitment: Company Stage Manager for Broken Biscuits by Tom Wells

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We’re on the lookout for a friendly and dedicated Company Stage Manager on the book to go on tour with BROKEN BISCUITS and team PP this year. Must be able to drive a van. Could it be you? Details below:

COMPANY STAGE MANAGER on the book
BROKEN BISCUITS by Tom Wells

To apply please email a CV and brief cover letter to
harriet@painesplough.com

Application deadline: Tuesday 2 August at 10am

About the play:

A Paines Plough and Live Theatre Newcastle production
BROKEN BISCUITS
by Tom Wells

“The point is: we’re losers. Nobodies. Carry on like this, we’re losers forever. And we don’t have to be. Fresh start, two months to completely one hundred per cent reinvent ourselves. And I know exactly how we can do that.”

Megan, Holly and Ben are definitely not the cool kids. But Megan has a plan. One long summer holiday to change their lives. One sure path to coolness. One amazing transformation, through the power of song.

Holed up in Megan’s garden shed, three old friends try to change their fortunes in a beautiful, heart-warming, laugh-out-loud coming-of-age story for our times. Rock on.

Dates: 5th September – 3rd December

5 – 24 September: Rehearse, London

26 September – 1 October: Rehearse, Newcastle

3 – 5 October: Tech, Newcastle

6 – 10 October: Previews, Newcastle

11 October: Press, Newcastle

12 – 24 October: Run, Newcastle

25 October – 3 December: Tour

Job Purpose:

To support the Director and manage the BROKEN BISCUITS company during rehearsals and on tour ensuring the efficient running of the rehearsal room and productions in tech and performance and the well-being of the company. To call and operate all performances on the BROKEN BISCUITS tour.

Key Responsibilities (including but not limited to):

– To source and buy any props and costume for the productions as requested by the Director and Designer, within the budgets and parameters agreed with the Producer.
– To manage the petty cash budget within the parameters set by the Producer.
– To strictly monitor and adhere to the weekly schedules as provided by the Producer.
– To ensure that all set, costume and props are kept in a tidy, clean and orderly manner and to replace any consumable items within the budgets and parameters agreed with the Producer.
– To drive a van on tour.
– To support the TSM with the fit-up and strike at each venue
- In conjunction with the TSM’s to ensure that all working and public areas are kept tidy and clear of waste material and that equipment is maintained to a safe and proper standard.
- In conjunction and liaison with the Technical Stage Manager, to complete any day to day maintenance that may be required of the set, props, furniture and dressing for the production according to the Director’s and Designer’s requirements and within budgets and parameters agreed with Producer.
– In conjunction and liaison with the Technical Stage Managers, to ensure that all work undertaken on the set, props and furniture etc. is completed to the high standards agreed with the Producer.
– Cover the running and/or operating of the production whilst on the road.
– To liaise and co-operate with all other departments and individuals within Paines Plough.
– To act as a credible ambassador for the company at all times.
– To adhere to the Health and Safety Policy of the company, undertaking such duties as are required, and ensuring that reasonable care is taken to ensure a healthy and safe working environment.
– To undertake any other appropriate duties which may be allocated by the Producer.
– Be in attendance at post-show discussions, press/photo calls and interviews for the Insights programme as notified
– To deliver rehearsal and show reports for the production to the co-producers and the creative team.
– To support and manage the company during rehearsals, production, in Edinburgh and on tour

Person Specification

Essential:

Previous experience of the role, preferably within a similar-sized venue or production company

– Able to drive and hold a full UK Driving License
– Demonstrable ability to perform the duties listed above
– An organised yet flexible approach and calm under pressure
– Dedicated and committed with excellent focus and organisational skills
– Ability to be creative and resourceful in problem solving
– Proven ability to work within allocated budgets
– A working knowledge of the ITC/Equity Subsidised Repertory Agreements
– Awareness and experience of health and safety legislation and practice
– Experience of and ability to operate QLab
– Good team player

Desirable:

– First Aid trained

Fee:

£447.50 p/w plus relocation allowance of £95 p/w in Newcastle and subsistence allowance of £282.70 p/w on tour, in line with ITC minimum rates of pay.

To apply please email a CV and brief cover letter to harriet@painesplough.com with the subject heading: BROKEN BISCUITS CSM APPLICATION

Application deadline: Tuesday 2 August, 10am

Interview dates: Skype interviews w/c 1 August 2016. Let us know if you are up in Edinburgh this week as we may be able to meet you there.

Please note you must be available on one of the interview dates.

We’re recruiting for Roundabout in Edinburgh

Roundabout audience Rich Lakos

WANTED: Enthusiastic and motivated people to join Team PP in Edinburgh.

Listen up. This August we’re super pleased to be returning to the Edinburgh Festival Fringe with ROUNDABOUT. From 5 – 28 August, ROUNDABOUT will pop up in the courtyard of Edinburgh’s Summerhall and house a season of extraordinary work all performed in a thrilling 360 degree setting.

WHO ARE WE LOOKING FOR?

We’re seeking people who are engaged, open and fans of new writing to work across two teams for the duration of the festival. These teams are:

- Visitor Services
- Street Team

WHAT WILL YOU NEED TO DO?

Street Team

– Flyering and postering around Edinburgh (come rain or shine).
– Talking to the public about the shows.
– Sticking up and stapling reviews.
– Being an enthusiastic ambassador for Roundabout and the shows.

Visitor Services

– Welcoming audience members into Roundabout.
– Taking tickets and seating audience members.
– Managing latecomers.
– Troubleshooting and being the point of contact in the event of an evacuation.

HOW MUCH WILL YOU BE PAID?

You will be paid an hourly rate depending on your age:

– £6 per hour for 18- 20 year olds.
– £7 per hour for 20- 25 year olds.
– £7.20 per hour for 25 and over.

WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS?

– We pay above minimum wage.
– Training from Paines Plough’s and Summerhall’s dedicated and experienced Fringe team to perform your role to the best of your ability.
– A Summerhall Pass, which permits the holder free entry to all shows in the Summerhall programme, provided they’re not sold out. This gives access to over 120 shows. Pass holders also receive discounts at the Summerhall cafe, restaurant, concessions and bars. As usual the Summerhall programme is excellent. You can check it out here. All that for free.
– Free playtexts for all of the Paines Plough Roundabout plays.
– An end of run party with us so you can celebrate your achievements together before finishing for the season.

WHAT ARE THE ROUNDABOUT SHOWS?

Paines Plough, Sherman Cymru & Theatr Clywd present
LOVE, LIES AND TAXIDERMY by Alan Harris

Paines Plough present
GROWTH by Luke Norris

Paines Plough & Half Moon present
I GOT SUPERPOWERS FOR MY BIRTHDAY by Katie Douglas

Paines Plough and Pentabus present
EVERY BRILLIANT THING by Duncan Macmillan with Jonny Donahoe

Prime Cut productions presents
SCORCH by Stacey Gregg

Walrus presents
LEMONS LEMONS LEMONS LEMONS LEMONS by Sam Steiner

Jonny & the Baptists
EAT THE POOR

Katie Bonna and Paul Jellis in association with SOHO Theatre present
ALL THE THINGS I LIED ABOUT by Katie Bonna

Ghost Quartet presents
GHOST QUARTET

Fly By Night Productions presents
DES CLARKE’S ALL STAR COMEDY IN AID OF STV CHILDREN’S APPEAL

EARLIER / LATER

A series of early morning and late night one-off shows and events. Coffee and croissants with readings, talks, workshops, debates, insights and special guests. Get your fix of fresh ideas, brave new work and rip-roaring performances.

HOW DO YOU APPLY?

Send a cover letter, CV explaining your relevant experience, and your availability during the festival to office@painesplough.com with the subject ‘EDINBURGH FESTIVAL TEAM/[STREET TEAM or VISITOR SERVICES]’. You are more than welcome to apply for both teams in one application, in which case, please use the subject line ‘EDINBURGH FESTIVAL TEAM/BOTH’.

Although we would prefer team members to be around for the whole festival season we are still happy to accept applications from those with a limited availability.

Deadline for applications: Monday 13 June, 12pm

Shortlisted candidates will be invited to our recruitment day in London Thursday 16 June. or in exceptional cases be interviewed by Skype or phone if they cannot attend the recruitment day.

All staff are required to attend one of our training days in either London or Edinburgh. This will be a key opportunity to meet fellow staff and get to know our exciting venue. The training dates are as follows:

- Hackney Showroom, London – Sunday 17th July
- Summerhall, Edinburgh – Friday 29th July

Please note you must be over 18 to apply for this position.

To access the full job description visit the ‘Get Involved’ section on our website.

We look forward to hearing from you!

Taste Tuesday: Chocolate Cake and Cheese Scones

Finance and Admin Assistant Charlotte is clearly a fan of the PP blog and knows that we love a little bit of cheese and a little bit of chocolate. Her Taste Tuesday effort brought together both in delicious union as she treated us to two terrifically turned out treats: the family birthday cake and some savoury scones. Delish. 

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Chocolate Cake

Ingredients for sponge cake/
6oz Caster Sugar
6oz Margarine
3 Eggs (roughly 2oz each)
5oz Self Raising Flour
1 ½ oz Cocoa Powder
1 tsp Baking Powder

Ingredients for butter cream/

3oz Margarine
6oz Icing Sugar
2oz Cocoa Powder

Method/

Preheat the oven at 170 degrees.

Mix flour, caster sugar, baking powder and (sieved) cocoa powder into a mixing bowl. Then add the margarine and eggs. Using an electric whisk mix together for two minutes and divide the mixture between two greased tins. Bake for 20-25 minutes, then leave to cool.

For the butter cream, put all ingredients together in a small mixing bowl and whisk until creamy. You may need to add more butter gradually to make it lighter. To finish, spread the butter cream evenly over one sponge and sandwich together.

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Cheese Scones

Ingredients/
8oz Self Raising Flour
3oz grated Cheese
3oz Margarine
1tsp Baking Powder
1 Egg
1tbsp Milk/Water

(for 8-10 scones)

Method/

Preheat your oven to 190 degrees.

Add the margarine to the flour and baking powder and rub in with your hands then add the cheese, egg and milk/water. Mix with your hands to form a soft dough (you may need to add a small amount of water to help it come together).

Using a rolling pin, roll out to roughly 1 inch thickness and cut out your scones before placing on a greased baking tray and brushing with a little bit of egg or milk.

Bake for 12 minutes.

And you’re done – enjoy.

– Charlotte.

 

What do you do all day? Administrator

PP Administrator Simone Ibbett-Brown.

PP Administrator Simone Ibbett-Brown.

Name: Simone Ibbett-Brown
Job Title: Administrator

Hello! Can you give us a brief overview of your career so far?
After doing a load of producing while I was at uni, I was lucky enough to get a year-long traineeship with international-touring theatre company Cheek by Jowl through the incredible Creative Access paid internship scheme. During my time there I moved roles from Office Assistant to PA to the Artistic Directors, and then left to join Paines Plough as their Administrator in September of 2015.

How did you end up in your current role?
Actually, the previous Administrator at Paines Plough emailed me at Cheek by Jowl and asked if we would retweet their job vacancy… I did so and then went one better and applied for it myself!

What are your main responsibilities within Team PP?
One of my main duties is to assist Aysha (the General Manager) in ensuring that Paines Plough’s finances are looking peachy, so I work closely with the producing team on venue settlements and royalties, as well as doing the day to day accounting for the company.

Other aspects of my role include creating the newsletter, running our university placement scheme, and administrating a variety of PP events from Press Nights to fundraisers.

What do you think are the essential skills needed to be a successful Administrator?
Attention to detail, organisation, an enjoyment of numbers, and most importantly, communication skills. That doesn’t mean you have to be particularly outgoing or anything, but it’s important to be clear, friendly and switched on to what the other person really needs from you.

Real talk – what’s the least enjoyable part of your job?
Having to chase people for money – nobody wants to be a loan shark.

What’s the best piece of advice anyone ever gave you?
“I choose a lazy person to do a hard job. Because a lazy person will find an easy way to do it.” – Bill Gates

Okay, so maybe he didn’t give me that piece of advice personally, but as an Administrator I always aspire to be lazy. By which I of course mean I aspire to find new ways to make PP’s processes and procedures more efficient and helpful for all involved.

Meet the WITH A LITTLE BIT OF LUCK Cast: Gabriel Benn

Not ones to let a Bank Holiday get in the way of a blog, we grabbed WITH A LITTLE BIT OF LUCK‘s Gabriel Benn to talk touring, musical influences and uh, Beyoncé and Jay-Z… 

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Is this the first theatre production that you’ve toured with?

Yeah, it is. It’s a whole new experience. The tour dates are all first time visits for a lot of the cast and it’s great, being in all these different places and having the chance for the cast to explore and have good walks around. I think Lincoln was probably the most unexpected surprise. It was such a beautiful city; I managed to have a good wander down the old cobbled streets to explore the old town and the cathedral.

Can you tell us a little bit about what made you get in to music and DJ-ing?

Good question! I remember Mark Ronson being a big inspiration when I was about 14 because he was DJ-ing and making music and looking really cool. He’d just released Ooh Wee, if you remember that? It was around that time and I liked what he was doing a lot.

Mark-Ronson-Late-Late-Show

My dad gave me some decks that Christmas and I started making music. My friends and I got into producing electronic mostly, and then I started travelling and producing to expand my musical vocabulary. I started in Ghana at first, being a very rhythmical place as far as music goes, so that helped me expand my abilities. Then Columbia afterwards which had an amazing variety of rhythm and it just made me push the musical boundaries that I’d set myself. It allowed me to grow, and if you learn more you can do more.

Have you brought those influences into the way that you work with Martyna and Seroca during WITH A LITTLE BIT OF LUCK?

I think so, because being influenced by other world rhythms has allowed me, in a sense, to infuse those rhythms into the performance and that has helped me to adapt to the strong rhythms of Garage.

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Were you into Garage when you were younger or has being part of WITH A LITTLE BIT OF LUCK expanded your knowledge of it?

It has expanded my knowledge hugely – I came in late because I’m 25 so I was only 11 when people like our leading actor, Seroca, were going out to the raves. But five years later I started DJ-ing all kinds of electronic and picked out quite a lot of Garage from the back catalogue of music, so I was always playing bits and bobs of Garage and really loved it. This show helped me understand why Garage meant so much to so many people.

Finally, what can or should an audience expect?

Well, audiences so far have loved the music which has been nice. There’s been a lot of laughter at the pop culture references from 2001 like Starbucks and E4 which had just launched. It’s been great because it makes people reflect on things that are now such a strong part of our lives – even things like Beyoncé and Jay-Z’s relationship! – and that’s been really fun. The musical elements of the show have really been a success because people have got up and danced and sang along -they’re visibly happy at hearing some of their favourite songs which is great.

Meet the WITH A LITTLE BIT OF LUCK cast: Seroca Davis

We caught up with our leading lady and raver on the road, Seroca Davis. She’s currently careering across the country bringing the rave to Manchester, Margate and loads of our favourite places in between. Today she is in Canterbury, where better to have a chat and find out how she’s finding life on the road with WITH A LITTLE BIT OF LUCK.

Seroca

Hey, Seroca! What can or should an audience expect from WITH A LITTLE BIT OF LUCK?

A good story, great music and to feel like you want to rave after the show! It is a mix of one of my favourite genres of music and fabulous writing. I’m loving raving on stage with audiences and getting them involved too!

And what made you want to get involved in the show?        

I loved the fact that it was a play which included old school garage! It’s one of my favourite genres of music and very nostalgic for me. It takes me back to secondary school when I used to listen to Heartless Crew and Pay as u go radio sets on my walkman! Also, I really admire Sabrina’s writing so was great to be able to work with her and help bring her work to life.

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What was your first professional, paid gig? And where was it? 

My first professional role was when I was 10 years old and I did a training video for the London Transport Museum. Very good fun!

Do you have a connection to any of the locations on the tour? 

I had been to Edinburgh before we took the show to the Roxy as I did a play at the Fringe festival in 2012. I also performed at the Crucible in Sheffield back in 2010. And I used to go to the seaside at Margate as a child!

I’ve lived all over North London in Tottenham, Wood Green and Edmonton so I’m really looking forward to the shows at the ROUNDHOUSE in June.

Did a particular person inspire you to want to become a performer/musician? Who was it and how did they encourage you?

Not a specific person, but my mum was very encouraging and she always taught me that I could be whatever I wanted to be. She always made me feel like it was possible for me to be an actress and is still my biggest fan! Actresses like Helen Mirren, Viola Davis and Angela Bassett inspire me now though.

WITH A LITTLE BIT OF LUCK touches down in Canterbury tonight at the Marlowe Theatre for two nights of mellifluous melodies and music making, before hitting Barking, Fareham, Nottingham, Wellingborough and Lancaster. Check out where else we’re heading here.

Taste Tuesday: Traditional Greek Marple Cake

We’ve been excited about Sofia’s Taste Tuesday debut since she revealed that she comes from a very foodie family with a load of authentic Greek recipes up her sleeve. We could barely contain our glee when she presented a traditional Greek marple cake, using her family recipe.  We can categorically state that the Stephanou School of Cookery has produced a Masterchef.

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The ingredients for the cake are standards that everyone should have in their cupboard – if not they’re really easy to come by in your local supermarket.

Ingredients/

200 ml (7 floz) vegetable oil
225g (8oz) caster sugar
4 medium eggs
juice of 1 large orange and the zest
200 ml (7 fl oz) milk
A few drops of vanilla extract
450g (1 lb) plain, fine flour
3 teaspoons baking powder

… and some strawberries to make it healthy.

Here’s the how to…

Method/

Pre-heat the oven to 190°C/375 f/ Gas Mark 5.

Beat together the oil and sugar in a mixing bowl and gradually add the eggs one at a time. Mix in the orange juice, zest, milk and vanilla extract and fold in the sifted flour and baking powder until smooth.

Pour the mixture into a greased and floured 1.2 litre (2 pint) cake ring known in Germany as a ‘Kugelhopt’.

Tap the cake ring gently to level the surface, and bake in the pre heated oven for approximately 50 minutes or until the cake is nicely brown (test with a skewer).

Allow the cake to cool in the tin then place a plate on top of the tin and gently tip it upside down onto another plate. Pour some strawberries into the middles and serve with cream.

Serve and enjoy!

– Sofia