Tuesday, March 28, 2023

Thurrock Courts Players scoop top award

THURROCK Courts Players have received a surprise award from NODA for their consistent contribution to amateur theatre in recent years.

Members were aware that their production of Vicar Of Dibley had been nominated for Best Play Award when they went to St Ives in Cambridgeshire to an Oscars style ceremony on Sunday.

The group have received such nominations for the past three years but not been lucky enough to actually win. This year their luck changed as the announcement led to whoops of joy. However, little did they know that there was more to come.

NODA (National Operatic and Dramatic Association) is split into areas and Thurrock is part of NODA East which spreads from Kings Lynn across to Welwyn and down to the Thames. This area is then split into 12 more regions and Thurrock is part of a smaller region including Brentwood and Southend. The Best Play Award covered this region only.

However, Vicar went on to win the award for the Best Production in 2015 beating the much bigger and more ambitious musicals which often win all the awards.

The icing on the cake was at the very end of the awards ceremony when the Councillor East is allowed to recognise special achievements by individuals or groups.

Councillor Don McKay selected Thurrock Courts Players out of the hundreds of groups in NODA East and praised them for their consistently high standard of productions three times a year and also finding time to run annual drama festivals over the last 20 years.

Courts chairman, Vic Gray said "We would have been happy with just the fourth nomination as it shows our consistency but to win three such prestigious awards including the Councillor’s Cup is overwhelming.

"We will make sure we put it on display for our audiences at our next play, Murdered To Death, at the Thameside Theatre in May".


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