Hey guys – Judy here! I play the character of Nerys in Statespeare and I’m going to get you up to speed on the last couple of days of our Queensland tour!
Monday 18 July AM: After a fantastic day off in Townsville (I broke in my new thongs and caught some rays with the gang on Magnetic Island!), it was time to head south to Ayr. Our crew of Shaun, Gilly and Scotty headed off early in Borris the truck to get a jump start on the bump-in at the Burdekin Theatre. The cast had a quick stop at a shopping mall for some supplies (I picked up some more warm weather clothing – I’ve never been to North Queensland and had no idea it would be so hot in the middle of winter! I didn’t bring a hat…or togs…or shorts! D’oh) then we did the hour’s drive to Ayr in our trusty van Bessie.
When we arrived, we went straight to the Burdekin Theatre. After performing in halls for the last few towns, it was awesome to be in a purpose-built theatre again! The Burdekin is such a lovely venue and so full of character, with wonderfully helpful front of house and backstage staff. The bio box has GREEN shag pile carpet on the walls!
We also enjoyed the foyer and backstage areas which were covered with signed photos of past performers, including familiar Queensland faces such as Kamahl, Carol Burns and Simon Gallaher. And we chuckled at some favourites that perhaps have not withstood the test of time, such as the girl’s singing group Girlfriend (remember when hats with huge flowers on them were cool?) and Frente (of ‘Accidentally Kelly Street’ fame! Possibly the most annoying song of all time?).
Monday PM: After bump-in, cast and crew checked into our motel and caught up on some work/rest/play for the afternoon. Then we regrouped for dinner and after scanning Ayr’s main strip, we chose a restaurant purely based on the fact that it had pretty fairy lights! Luckily, the food was fantastic and the service was warm and friendly.
Tuesday AM: Our 10am show was packed to the brim with 350 students from various schools in the shire. The response was fantastic! I never cease to enjoy how each audience is unique, and laughs/gasps/cries at different things and relates differently to each character. As an actor, it keeps you on your toes and means that every show is fresh and fun! We had some great questions during the post-show Q&A session, including one we’ve never encountered before – ‘Do you think Shakespeare was stoned when he wrote his plays?’! (By the way, our answer was no!…and drugs are bad!)
Tuesday PM: Another afternoon off, giving us a chance to do some work, explore the sights and even do a spot of fishing!
So, that’s the tour up to date, folks. Thanks for having us Ayr and the Burdekin Theatre, it was a real pleasure! Tomorrow, we leave early to drive to Cairns. Talk to you then! Or as Miss Pingle would say, catch you on the flipside, homies!