DAMES AT SEA WENT UP IN STYLE AT STRATFORD-UPON-AVON COLLEGE

This glitzy 1930’s Broadway show, written by Jim Wise and George Haimsohn, was the initial inspiration for the highly successful stage musical ‘42nd Street’, and after the performances of Dames at Sea at the College last week you can see why.

With some truly stylish costumes, choreography and sumptuous musical tunes, this magical and relatively unknown little show left the audiences spellbound.

As ever the quality of the Musical Theatre students’ performance did not disappoint and this year the choreographic focus was on tap dance – and boy did those ‘hoofers’ deliver! The company of 16 was supported by a professional six-piece band which really lit up performances across the week’s run.

Musical Theatre and Technical Theatre students made up the cast and crew of Dames at Sea

Whilst the performers delivered their roles with style, humour and panache, the magic-makers behind the scenes must be heralded for their incredible input to this well polished and cleanly executed performance. Technical Theatre students produced not one but two stunning sets, completely transforming the College’s Gordon Vallins studio into a Broadway Theatre for act 1 and then to a USS battleship for act 2.

The lighting design was refined and slick, illuminating the performers perfectly and creating some stunning visual effects. The sound of the singers and the band was crisp and clear, with the students in charge of the 16 radio mics in firm command of the audio ‘rudder’. The show was run or ‘called’ by a team of 10 Technical Theatre students who managed every aspect of the production, delivering a consistently high level of performance from start to finish.

It is a particularly special time for the College. How about – This year they celebrate their 50th birthday on the site at the Willows North, and the evening of the final performance of Dames at Sea (1st Feb) marked their 1-year anniversary of merging with Solihull College & University Centre – what a way to celebrate!

To summarise: a fabulous family night out for all, performed to sell-out audiences, demonstrating the incredible skills and hard work developed by students at the College both on and off stage, and epitomising what the College has a truly excellent reputation for – Dames at Sea was sensational.