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Headgate Theatre Productions


About Headgate Theatre Productions

Headgate Theatre Productions was established to ensure that the theatre's programme included a wide range of drama productions alongside those produced by our hirers, as well as a means of generating further revenue to help run the building. It is rightly proud of its growing reputation, reflected in positive audience feedback, the extensive nominations and awards received each year from the local press critic and the North Essex Theatre Guild, and the fact that our actors and creative team have fun in putting on a range of challenging and interesting drama. "Grow Up Grandad" was awarded Best Drama Production 2017-18 by North Essex Theatre Guild, and in 2018-19 Kerry King was awarded Best Director (joint award) for her production of “Playhouse Creatures”. In addition there have been numerous other awards over the years, and the Headgate Theatre Productions “Waiting for Godot” and “Moonlight and Magnolias” feature as two of the top three amateur production favourites of local and national art critic, Paul T Davies.

We welcome interest from performers, directors and those who might help with technical support (lighting, sound, stage management). Further information can be found below.

Performing with Headgate Theatre Productions

We run open auditions for most Headgate Theatre Productions and tend to audition around 6-9 months in advance of a planned production. All auditions are advertised on our Facebook page, and in our What’s On monthly newsletter, with detailed information - character requirements/rehearsal plan etc. made available on this website.

We endeavour to make the auditions as non-threatening as possible. In certain circumstances we reserve the right to limit the numbers auditioning.

Open Auditions - JACK 'N' THE BEANSTALK (details)


Saturday 24th July at 3pm (for younger performers - those who were between the ages of 12 and 16 on 25th June 2021)

Sunday 25th July at 11am (for adult performers - those who were aged 16 or over on 25th June 2021)

If on the 24th/25th July there are government restrictions on the numbers of people who can gather in an indoor space, the auditions will be cancelled and re-scheduled. Details will be posted on our website and social media pages. If you would like an email notification of such a change, please send an email to cdavison@aspects.net saying you plan to attend and would like to be notified of any changes.

AUDITION VENUE (for both): Headgate Theatre Studio, 14 Chapel Street North, Colchester, CO2 7AT

DATES: Nine shows at Headgate Theatre between December 1st and December 12th 2021.

Charlie Davison is looking for friendly, enthusiastic and talented people to fill the roles listed below. Charlie is looking for principals and chorus members. If you like a good laugh - and are also prepared to put in some proper hard work and serious rehearsal time, then please - come along!

Our original version of Jack ’n’ the Beanstalk follows the basics of the traditional fairy tale, and adds a few modern twists. The Giant (Mr. Bigg) is a very rich and very evil business tycoon who doesn’t play by the rules. He is also a cannibal. His evil henchman, Igor tempts the greedy Mayor of Greenville (Mr. Meyer) to put his daughter Gloria in great danger by sending her on a dinner date with Mr.Bigg. But Gloria has a brave admirer who will stop at nothing to save her. And there’s a fairy… and magic beans… and a dancing cow… and a magic harp…. and "a goose what lays golden eggs".

On stage roles:-

Mrs Nimble (A Panto Dame, a widow, mother of Jack and Billy)

Jack 'B’ Nimble (A nice kind village boy. Our hero.)

Silly Billy(Jack’s brother. A comedy role.)

Daisy(A sweet-natured dancing cow. Two actor-dancers in a pantomime cow suit. No words or songs.)

Mr. Meyer, the Mayor (Money-grabbing landlord. Local entrepreneur. A greedy man but not actually evil deep inside.)

"Gorgeous" Gloria (A daughter of Mr. Meyer the Mayor. Our heroine.)

"Plain" Jane (Meyer’s other daughter. Jane is very clever.)

Fairy Nuff (A good fairy.)

Mr. Bigg the Giant (The world’s richest businessman. An evil giant who lives in a mansion in the sky and eats people. Few lines, a second act role. The actor cast may be in the chorus in Act One. The actor MUST be tall!)

Igor (Mr. Bigg’s villainous henchman and representative on earth. He was once a good fairy, but not any more. Now he is evil through and through.)

Servant/Waiter (Mr. Bigg’s servant. Few lines, a second act role. The actor cast may be in the chorus in Act One.)

A Golden Goose (A goose “what lays golden eggs”. Few lines, a second act role. The actor cast may be in the chorus in Act One.)

A Magic Harp (A harp that sings. Few lines, a second act role. The actor cast may be in the chorus in Act One.)

Villagers (The Nimble’s friends and neighbours - The Chorus)

The Apprentices (Mr. Bigg’s business apprentices - The Chorus)

Everyone sings and dances.

Most principals have duets/trios as well as taking part in the ensemble numbers.

If you need to know anything more, please email Charlie Davison: cdavison@aspects.net

Directing for Headgate Theatre Productions

We welcome expressions of interest from new and experienced directors. Our programme of plays is usually developed from May - October of each year.

We put on a pantomime each year, and then aim for 4 or 5 other drama productions. Ideally these should help to fill gaps in the year when other groups are not performing, but inevitably the availability of directors influences our programme. We would look to have an annual programme which included a “classic” play, a play with “popular” appeal, a challenging or topical play, and possibly a play with appeal to a specific audience segment (including any text from school syllabus selections). However, the over-riding requirement is that we maintain excellence in our production values and deliver top quality productions to be enjoyed by our patrons– whether that be a well-known piece or something new.

Following consideration of proposals by a small sub-committee, directors are allocated a “champion” to ensure that there is good communication, a budget is developed (over which the director exercises significant control) a rehearsal programme is agreed, and technical support is identified.

Technical support for Headgate Theatre Productions

The technical support for Headgate Theatre Productions is drawn from our team of volunteers, and we always welcome new people with an interest or skills in lighting, sound, scenic design/painting, costume making or stage management (including making or sourcing props). Preparation for our annual pantomime requires lots of input and usually starts in the late summer. We are open to discussion with students (16+) who need to produce props or items as part of their studies.


To express an interest or find out more about directing or providing technical support for Headgate Theatre Productions, please contact David or Dawn King on 01206 530257 or email volunteers@headgatetheatre.co.uk