Hilarious night in Haslemere as sisters take the stage

REVIEW

Sister Act

Haslemere Players

Haslemere Hall

Wednesday, April 16 2016

What a joyous, hilarious show to see on a cold March night! This was my first Haslemere Players show and after this experience, I’ll be coming back!

Well done director Howard Bicknell, musical director Lizzie Hales and choreographer Debra Allen, for a well-paced, tight show with all the humour pointed up. The band was great, and I liked the seventies interval and pre-show music keeping the atmosphere bright and fun.

Jessica McCluskey was brilliantly cast as the streetwise wannabe nightclub singer Delores van Cartier, completely inhabiting the role from start to finish, with a mighty set of pipes to boot. Totally confident onstage, she led from the front and obviously loved her character. Spot on.

Vicki Gavin was also wonderful, and offered a complete contrast, as the Mother Superior, horrified at having this colourful character in her convent. Her voice is striking, too – a very pure sound, beautiful to listen to.

Chloe Johnson-Jones was terrific as the exuberant Sister Mary Patrick, beaming from ear to ear, while Abi Rogers played the timid Sister Mary Robert, finally standing firm when it comes to the crunch – a nice transformation.

The convent sisters were a great ensemble – and their song It’s Good to be a Nun reminded me at times of Book of Mormon – absolutely hilarious.

Judy Fowler must be commended on her rap performance as the gung-ho Sister Mary Lazarus – I loved her cheeky grin and her energy.

Tony Creasey was great as the Irish priest Monsignor O’Hara, delighted at the change in fortunes of the convent, and wearing ever more flamboyant vestments.

Andy Ermitage-Larby as Eddie the cop demonstrated his lovely, warm singing voice in I Could Be That Guy.

Bill Hudson was a wonderful Curtis, the dodgy hoodlum out to get Delores  – his song When I Find My Baby with his little trio of falsetto backing singers – Christopher Sadler, Zac Rasulian (gosh he can hit some high notes!) and Peter Foster – bringing the house down.

The trio of gangsters also got the audience roaring in their number where they explained how to seduce a woman.

Yes, the American accents were a bit hit and miss occasionally  and there were sound issues, but these were very minor points. It was a rowdy, laugh-a-minute, romp which got a standing ovation. A superb night’s entertainment – highly recommended.

Kat Wootton

Easter Sunday market in Farnham

Spring will definitely be in the air at the Farmers’ Market in Farnham on Easter Sunday.

Seasonal stallholders such as Sopley, Seale Nurseries and Pepperpot Herbs will be returning in time for the start of the gardening season. The market will also welcome the return of Biltong Demon, the Roasted Bean Company and a guest appearance by Tiger Spring Tea.

Councillor Jill Hargreaves, Lead Member for Tourism and Events says: “I expect there to be a real feeling of optimism in the air at the market. Spring will be officially here, we will have altered the clocks and many of us will be enjoying the company of friends and family for the Easter break.

“As it is Easter, we will be giving away Easter eggs at the information tent so please do come along and say ‘hello’. By buying produce direct from the producer, Farmers’ Markets are a great way to support the local economy.”

The Farnham Lions will be raising money for the Kent Sussex Surrey Air Ambulance. They will be hosting the tea tent and will be joined by a cuddly lion that needs a name. Live musical entertainment will be provided by Kai Jensen.

The market will take place on Sunday, March 27 between 10am and 1.30pm in Central car park. For more information, visit: www.farnham.gov.uk/farmersmarket.

Health watch this week

Health and social care consumer champions, Healthwatch Hampshire, have announced plans for their annual Healthwatch Week, taking place from Monday, March 14 to Friday, March 18. The week will provide an excellent opportunity for the organisation to tackle important issues and raise awareness about the vital work they do within the community. Following up on the success of previous years, in 2016 Healthwatch Hampshire will be specifically supporting rural communities.
This year Healthwatch Hampshire are shifting their focus onto smaller towns, villages and communities across Hampshire. Access and availability of services in these areas will often vary greatly to those within cities, as such they will be visiting smaller population centres, including areas which may have been overlooked in the past. They will be ensuring as many people as possible get access to important advice. Collating feedback, they will be asking people to vote on their health and social care priorities. With a huge rural area to cover, they plan on staging a series of rural visits throughout the week. These will be in Romsey, Bishops Waltham, Hythe, Tadley and Alton. Specific details can be found on their website.
Wherever you live you can get involved by visiting your local Citizen’s Advice Bureau to find out more, give feedback about experiences and vote for your priorities.
Steve Manley, Interim Manager of Healthwatch Hampshire has said:
“We aim to engage with as many age groups and communities in these areas with a variety of activities. This will range from visits to schools and toddler groups to community groups, GP practices and market stalls. We look forward to meeting individuals in these areas and hearing their feedback about their experiences of health and social care services.”
Aiming to raise awareness of their work across the whole of Hampshire, the focus on rural areas will be an important step towards ensuring everyone is involved and included. Healthwatch Hampshire have been working closely with Citizens Advice to plan Healthwatch Week, aided by their local knowledge and widespread presence in the county.
For more information, visit: www.healthwatchhampshire.co.uk

Welcome to New Life!

Here is the new-look website for Life in Petersfield, Life in Haslemere and Life in Farnham, your local community lifestyle magazines.

Find out about local businesses, charities, clubs and societies, schools, food and drink producers, arts and craftspeople, motoring enthusiasts, gardens to visit and gardening advice, places to eat out, health, fitness and beauty tips, and what’s on – all in your town and its surrounding villages.

Contact editor Kat Wootton on 01420 485187 or email: kat@lifemags.co.uk with your news and ideas.