There were celebrations and jubilations for a Lancashire village's amateur theatrical society when the list of prize winners was announced at a top regional awards ceremony.
RATS (Ribchester Amateur Theatrical Society) was heaped with praise, not just for its outdoor summer promenade production ‘Courage Calls to Courage Everywhere’, but also for its outstanding youth production ‘The Quest Thing Since Sliced Bread’.
The NODA (National Operatic and Dramatic Association) North West District Awards presentation was held in Blackpool.
Best Directors (youth section) award went to tenneagers Charlie Hinkley and Laura Nickson for ‘The Quest Thing Since Sliced Bread’ which they also wrote.
The Quest show also won the award for Best Ensemble (youth section).
Another teenager Paul Bell won the Best Supporting Actor in a Pantomime award for his role as Hugh Mungus in ‘Lock Stock and Two Smoking Hotpots - Jack and the Beanstalk’, which was written by RATS' member Will Thomas.
Meanwhile The Lynne Millar Trophy went to the summer promenade production about gaining votes for women which was penned by RATS’ member Bridget Rabbitts. The production was directed and produced by Bridget, Viki Mason and Charlotte Green.
Viki said: “We were overwhelmed with our nominations and wins.
“It was a super evening held at the Grand Hotel in Blackpool. The awards were presented by Eddie Regan from NODA. He entertained the 200 strong audience by telling them all about how much rain he and his wife Jean endured when coming to watch our Promenade Play. He was very impressed that the show carried on in true NODA style and that we did not give up because of the weather.”
Other nominations included: Best Director (drama or comedy) and Best Ensemble for ‘Shakers’, directed by Keith Flood, Best Pantomime and Best Pantomime Director for ‘Lock Stock and Two Smoking Hotpots - Jack and The Beanstalk', directed by Dave Procter.
Daniel Riding and Charlotte Green were both nominated as Best Lead Actor (pantomime) and Best Supporting Actress (pantomime). Meanwhile Olivia and Sam Soper were nominated for the Best Youth In An Adult Play award for their roles in ‘Courage Calls to Courage Everywhere’
Charlotte said: “It was an amazing night for the RATS and the awards were truly well deserved. We have a hugely talented and hardworking membership ... from costume makers, set designers, producers, directors, writers and actors, not to mention our chaperones, lighting people, set painters and prompts. The list is long but it takes a strong team to bring our productions to life.”
• RATS’ next event is a party/performance evening on Saturday 2nd Feb at 7.30pm in Ribchester Village Hall. Tickets are £5 and will include supper. Tickets can be booked by calling 01254 878530.