The Production Team
Director and Choreographer
LAOS welcomes Louise back to the helm, continuing her association with us which began in 2003 when she choreographed ‘42nd Street’, and ‘Hello, Dolly!’ the following year. She has directed and choreographed all our shows since then, most recently ‘Fiddler on the Roof’ at the West Yorkshire Playhouse.
Louise trained in Leeds with Jean Pearce and John Auty, and at the Laban Centre, London. Her performing career was cut short by injury, around the same time she was asked to choreograph her first show at York Theatre Royal.
Throughout her career, she has directed and/or choreographed hundreds of shows of all types, and has recently won awards for best direction, choreography and overall production.
Louise and two colleagues formed production company Locked Out Productions in 2007, in order to bring new and exciting shows to the region. She is also Artistic Director of DAMUUS Dance Co, a company aimed at bridging the gap between the young amateur and professional dancer. In addition, Louise is Resident Choreographer at Scala Performing Arts in Leeds, and is a freelance teacher of Dance and Musical Theatre, having taught in schools and colleges throughout Britain, plus short spells in Europe and Australia.
Choreography for television includes ‘Heartbeat’, ‘The Dancer’, ‘Panto Time’, ‘My Parents Are Aliens’, ‘Emmerdale’, ‘The Booze Cruise’, ‘Bernard’s Watch’, ‘The Marchioness’ and BBC’s ‘Children In Need’.
We are delighted to welcome back our Musical Director of our last show, ‘Fiddler on the Roof’ at the West Yorkshire Playhouse. Jim has held the baton at Leeds now since 2005, when he joined us for ‘Jesus Christ Superstar’ at the West Yorkshire Playhouse.
Jim has a wealth of musical experience. He has been involved with a number of West Yorkshire groups over the years, and has been Musical Director for the pantomime at Leeds City Varieties. He has worked with the Potato Room Players here in Leeds, Harrogate St Andrew’s Players, and for Stage 84 at the Alhambra Theatre in Bradford. Further afield, he is involved in an annual project with 250 young people at the Swan Theatre in High Wycombe, producing a full scale musical in only two weeks. Immediately after finishing ‘Beauty and the Beast’, he will be travelling to Arbroath to MD a pantomime there.
Jim is a composer in his own right, having been shortlisted for the prestigious national Vivienne Ellis Award for new musicals when he co-wrote the musical adaptation of ‘Alice Through The Looking Glass’. He also co-wrote the music for a children’s Christmas musical ‘The Grinch Who Stole Christmas’, and has written TV jingles for two well known breakfast cereals.
In addition, Jim works as a musical arranger – recent work includes theatre shows for Page & Moy cruise liners and BBC Radio Four drama. Jim is also actively involved in delivering and managing community arts projects in South Yorkshire.
The Production Manager co ordinates with the committee on all production matters, set sourcing, liaison with theatre staff, working hours, set construction including health and safety issues. This also includes production meetings to ensure all aspects of the show run smoothly up to the first night’s performance i.e set delivery, costumes, lighting and sound.
The Stage Manager is in attendance at all performances, and key rehearsals to offer advice on set issues with the director/choreographer. During the rehearsal he discusses staffing of scene changes with his Assistant Stage Manager. During the show he oversees the show, making sure that all scene changes are safely completed and communicates information to the Deputy Stage Manager during the show. The role also covers cast and crew discipline at rehearsal and performances.
Deputy Stage Manager
The Deputy Stage Manager attends floor rehearsals and makes notes of scenery movement, lighting cues and effects. These are written in ‘The Book’. Close co ordination with the Director/ Choreographer, Lighting Designer and Stage Manager is essential. The Deputy Stage Manager sits in the ‘prompt corner’ and initially calls all cast and crew to the stage and during the show calls all the cues to all technical departments.
Assistant Stage Manager
The Assistant Stage Manager works with the Stage Manager and Deputy Stage Manager co-ordinating the crew and staffing of scene changes both at rehearsal and during the run of the show.
The Props Manager is responsible for locating anything that will need to be carried by actors on stage. This may include weapons, bottles, luggage, wands, teapots, and anything else the Director and cast may come up with. Many props can be found in our own props store or borrowed from other theatre groups or the cast. Sometimes props will need to be made or built.
Sue has worked extensively with costume throughout a long teaching career in Fashion & the Creative Arts, culminating in an M.A., with Distinction (History of Dress & Textiles). Recently retired as a Lecturer for the History of Art Department at Leeds University, she continues as free-lance lecturer, designer and consultant wherever needed. As wardrobe mistress for LAOS, productions have included Hello Dolly, Jesus Christ Superstar, Ragtime, The Producers and everything since and inbetween!
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