Quite an achievement, to have survived through many economically troubled times, to have built a fully equipped theatre, and still to be churning out varied productions of appeal to audiences as widely varying, to date.
Their 80th anniversary has been much feted, with various events from champagne breakfasts to cocktail parties to gala performances, to thank the people still involved at Reps today, who’ve played their part in keeping this lively and resilient theatre very much alive.
A short run of the same two plays that heralded the birth of this energetic thespian organisation proved its mettle!
On February 17 1931, The Repertory Players launched, with the amusing study of the price of recognition, Fame and the Poet by Lord Dunsany as the lighter Curtain Raiser, followed by the more seriously erudite and thought provoking play Magic By GK Chesterton.
It was an absolute pleasure to watch these plays at a Gala 80th anniversary celebratory evening at Reps.
It is sad that more serious and engaging theatre of this intellectually challenging variety does not draw the crowds to the extent needed to make their regular production economically viable for this theatre, which unsurprisingly, struggles with high costs and a too small base of theatre-goers.
The whole audience became thoroughly immersed in the very cleverly crafted Magic which explores the powerful influence of belief on our individual realities, and was as relevant today as it would have been back in the 1920s when first written and performed.
There were no weak links in this cast, or in the direction.
Congratulations to Reps for staying the distance and to Sue Bolt and the cast for skilfully delivering the plays that set Reps on its maiden voyage, and delighting their modern audiences just as much!