Wednesday, September 28, 2022

Gang Show stride on in 2012!

By Tanya Coutts

As a Brownie I can remember the excitement as Gang Show time drew nearer – a chance to go to the theatre on a Saturday morning and eat lots of sweets and ice cream, what wasn’t to like about that? And over the years, I can say that the love of Gang Show time has stayed with me.

This year marks 80 years since Ralph Reader first put on an all-Scout variety show in 1932 at the Scala Theatre in London, which was soon to become the tradition known now as Gang Show to be performed all over the world. This amazing anniversary was marked in the Finale of this year’s Gang Show, along with the Golden Jubilee and the Olympics, through a trio of songs where the gang sang Mr Readers “In the Wake of all the Years”, the patriotic “Land of Hope and Glory” and a re-worded “Chariots of Fire” to cheer on team GB this summer.

My favourite part of going to see the Gang Show at Thameside Theatre each year is that I get to watch people I know from both Guiding and Scouting get up and give it everything they’ve got, as well as knowing that my friends are backstage helping to make it happen. I’m proud of them all, because as much as I enjoy it, I am most definitely one of those ‘out there’ who enjoys watching them ‘up there’.

Every year there’s always a mixture of songs, dances and sketches to keep everyone entertained and this year was no exception. My favourite section (which has definitely made it into my top three Gang Show Moments ever) has to be the ‘Evolution of Dance’. I could just about see what they were doing I was laughing so much.

Another favourite from this year’s show was the ‘Silent Monks’. A funny scene, which was made even better by the fact the cast were not ready and others were pushed back on stage to ad lib to fill in the gap.

Year on year though, I do look forward to the ‘Old Bags’ and as usual this didn’t disappoint. With the three ‘old’ ladies on stage going through their shopping bags with some rather questionable purchases, it always makes me smile.

Gang Show will be on at the Thameside Theatre until Saturday evening (28th April 2012), but to find out more and to keep up to date with what the Gang are doing check out http://www.thurrockgangshow.org/ for more information about Stride On in Thurrock.

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