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  • Writer's pictureThe Lowestoft Players

Long service

A community theatre stalwart who has had a hand in every single show performed over the past five decades has been recognised for his long service.


Stephen Wilson has held many roles in the Lowestoft Players since joining in 1973. The 73-year-old Lowestoft resident is the oldest of four brothers who have all been involved in the Players and received his 50 years of service award last week.

  

During his unbroken 50 years of service it has meant he has been involved in some way for 166 productions, directing 18 of them and a leading role in 40. 


Stephen Wilson who has received an award for 50 years of service to The Lowestoft Players. Image Emma-Jayne Herbert.


Stephen has served as chairman twice and also oversees the creation of upcoming productions posters, programmes and publicity material. 


The former art teacher, who now works at Scenic Projects Ltd in the town, said: “I joined the Players back in 1973 and have been involved in one way or another in every single production since. 

 

“I am currently co-writing the new 'Goldilocks' panto script and busy preparing to co-direct the musical 'CATS'. 


“My favourite and standout performing roles are Sweeney Todd / Fagin / Scrooge / Tevye in Fiddler and the title role in The King and I.” 


He said he has "lost count" of the number of times he has taken to the stage as the group’s pantomime Dame as he just loves making people laugh. 


He has directed many musicals and said Jesus Christ Superstar, Chess, Jeckyll and Hyde and most recently The Hunchback of Notre Dame were among his favourite to produce. 

The Players met on 12th March for its annual general meeting and recognised the services of 19 of its members, who altogether have given more than 450 years of service between them.


The society’s outgoing chair Nick Garrod also received an award for 45 years of service. 


Members of the Lowestoft Players who have just received long service awards.

Left to right: Jimmy Aitkin, Kim Simpson, Caroline Warren, Wendy Takman, Jan Takman, Bernie Gooch, Stephen Wilson, Christine Hardy, Maurice Garrod, Stephanie Garrod and Nick Garrod. Image Emma-Jayne Herbert.


The Lowestoft Players' upcoming productions are Kipps: The New Half Sixpence Musical starting June 7 to June 15, followed by CATS on September 20 to 28. Both musicals will be performed at the Players Theatre with tickets on sale now - www.playerstheatre.info


The full list of long service award recipients included:  


50 Years - Stephen Wilson

45 Years - Nick Garrod

35 Years - Suzanne Kingston

35 Years - Steph Garrod

35 Years - Maurice Garrod

30 Years - Christine Hardy

25 Years - Diana Richards

25 Years - Kim Simpson

25 Years - Jan Takman

25 Years - Wendy Takman

25 Years - Jo 'Howie' Forster

20 Years - Stephen Clarke

20 Years - John Marjoram

15 Years - Jackie Darby

15 Years - Beth Freeman

15 Years - Bernie Gooch 

15 Years - Caroline Warren

10 Years - Jimmy Atkin

10 Years - Hazel Cole


Not all were able to be present at the ceremony.

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