Brassed Off November 15th, 2013

The Band has been approached once again to be involved with Oil Lamp Productions in another Stage Play of Brassed Off. It is proposed to be staged on the eve of the Durham Miners Gala at a Local Venue yet to be confirmed, the band are delighted and are looking forward to being part of this production.

We will post all information as and when it is confirmed, if you are interested please check the Web Site for updates and ticket sales. Thankyou

Here is the report from last years Production:

I would like to welcome Oil Lamp Productions to NODA North and to District 3. This play is the stage version of the 1996 movie about a colliery band struggling to keep going while the local coal mine is facing closure. Like the film, it had many sub-plots; the mining-related illness of the band leader, the financial problems of his son Phil, and a romance between band member Andy and one of the “management”.

The major problem when adaptations are made of a film is the large number of scene changes. This has resulted in a play with many short scenes, which means numerous pauses while furniture and props are moved, but a great deal of thought had obviously gone into the lighting plot and minimising of set in an effort to speed this up.

All of the principals gave strong character portrayals with good accents which were sustained throughout the performance. Steve White, as Jim, and Jordan Branthwaite as Harry, together with their respective wives, Lorna Breeze as Vera, and Hannah Brennan as Rita, were convincing as friends and couples going through the decision of whether to take the redundancy package on offer or fight for the survival of their pit and future jobs. The arrival of Gloria (Olivia Bowern) to the band brings a new lease of life to the normally lethargic Andy (Mark Percy), until he realises that she is working for the colliery management. This change of feeling and the awkwardness surrounding it was well portrayed by both actors. Nikki Briggs, as Sandra, gave a convincing performance as the long-suffering wife of Phil; her change from the caring, loving mother to the battling wife trying to “keep it all together” was excellent. Steven Stobbs, as Phil, and Frank Ditchburn as his father Danny, gave emotional and believable performances. Phil’s attempted suicide and Danny’s final speech at the Albert Hall being particularly poignant. The story is narrated in part by Phil’s 8 year old son Shane, played by Joseph McGrother. Joseph gave a confident and credible performance. He is a talented young man.

The play, of course, centres on the rehearsals and performances of a brass band, and Oil Lamp Productions had the services of the excellent Pittington Brass Band, the numbers they performed were a pleasure to listen to and it was very fitting that the production was part of the Durham Brass 2013 celebrations. Congratulations to all involved in the production.