We were going to perform Sweet Charity this summer at the Guildhall Theatre, a beautiful listed building in the centre of Derby. We had bought the licence for the show, brought in a director, a musical director and a lighting designer and started work on planning for the production.
In January, Derby City Council closed the Guildhall Theatre for an initial three-week period to sort out some issues with the roof. Before that period was over, the council then announced the venue would be closed until at least September as the building was considered unsafe. Without a suitable alternative theatre in which to perform, all our plans for Sweet Charity were out of the window.
But we are determined to perform this summer. After the initial outlay for Sweet Charity, we are now looking for a little extra help to secure an alternative venue to perform a musical revue show. This will provide our loyal audience with some entertainment and allow our community-based cast the chance to perform.
We are based at the Boulton Lane Community Centre in Allenton in Derby, a less-affluent area of the city from which we draw a lot of our members and our audience. But we also have members from across Derby - Spondon, Littleover, Mackworth, Osmaston, Oakwood, Alvaston.
We have junior members up to the age of 16 and senior members who are aged from late teens up to early 70s. We also invite children as young as three to perform in some of our shows, such as our most recent pantomime, Cinderella, which was written by a couple of our long-time members. Some of our former junior members are now working as professional actors after getting their first taste of theatre with Kaleidoscope Players.
We have been producing musicals, revues and pantomimes for Derby audiences over the last 30 years. We aim to keep membership costs to a minimum to ensure that anyone in the Derby area with a passion for performing can join our ranks. But the cost of putting on a show, specifically venue hire, licensing costs, technical and musical support, staging and costume, makes it difficult for amateur companies to break even.
This is why we are asking for the support of the crowdfunding community to continue producing shows to delight our Derby audiences, such as our Acorn Antiques, Cinderella, Return to the Forbidden Planet, Rapunzel and Addams Family.