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No one auditions for Tenterden Operatic and Dramatic Society's play Absent Friends

By Aidan Barlow

A drama society was left feeling a little friendless after no one auditioned for roles in its autumn production.

The Tenterden Operatic and Dramatic Society wanted to host the play Absent Friends by Alan Ayckbourn in October. But the society had to cancel the event after no one went to audition for parts in the play.

In the society’s newsletter, it stated: “There will be no autumn production this year. Low audience numbers have been an issue and there have been problems with casting in recent years.

Tenterden Operatic and Dramatic Society logo
Tenterden Operatic and Dramatic Society logo

“Nobody came to audition for Absent Friends, the play which was scheduled for this October.”

But society chairman Sally Klemen is upbeat about the future, as there will be a musical production of Sister Act in February which has already seen all the parts filled.

She said there can be trouble finding actors in autumn as other amateur drama groups can also host plays at the same time. Meanwhile the audiences for productions is still older, while musicals tend to be more popular with younger audiences and performers.

Ms Klemen said: “Sister Act is hugely popular and musicals are more popular as youngsters love to sing.

Sir Alan Ayckbourn
Sir Alan Ayckbourn

“Putting on musicals is considerably more expensive as the scripts and music costs a lot more to stage. We still stage two or three productions each year.”

The production of Sister Act is set for February and will include performances on Thursday and Friday night alongside two Saturday performances.

To find out more about the society or to get involved, search for the Tenterden Operatic and Dramatic Society group on Facebook or visit the group's website.

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