A gentle breeze from Hushabye Mountain Softly blows o’er Lullabye Bay. It fills the sails of boats that are waiting, Waiting to sail your worries away…
Stamford Showstoppers have had an extremely busy year since we reported on their last production – Priscilla Queen of the Desert – which they took to the Stamford Corn Exchange in February 2022 (directed by Nicola Sandall and Musical Director Cassandra Pattison). They performed four energetic shows of this flamboyant musical and, although credit must also go to the writers, they were bursting with pride at receiving standing ovations at the end of each show. ‘It was a pleasure to perform such a fabulous and exciting show, that sees three drag queens take a journey of discovery across Australia in a bright pink bus; we just loved it!’ said Director, Nicola.
The group was then approached by local writers and composers, Ian Winfrey and friends (from Castor and the Peterborough area), who had written a brand-new musical, Sparkling Eyes. They were looking for a group to take on the challenge of directing, adding dance and taking it to the stage. Still filled with the energy of Priscilla, Nicola and the team took on the challenge and stepped into the roaring twenties.
The 1920s-inspired musical is a story of three formidable sisters, a mysterious Russian necklace and deception within the family, adding in lively singing and Charleston-inspired dancing. The show was a success and the group not only performed in Stamford but also took Sparking Eyes on tour to the ADC theatre in Cambridge in July 2022. Due to their success the writers have approached them about producing another of their new works (watch this space).
But Showstoppers didn’t stop there; the summer saw them in Converse and jeans rehearsing for the lively 80s musical Footloose which they performed in September, just a couple of months ago. The group really enjoyed spending the time discovering the 80s… who doesn’t… bright colours, shoulder pads and dance moves that would make Kevin Bacon proud.
As a group who came together due to their shared love of dancing and performing, Showstoppers are over the moon with their reviews for these shows. Not one, but three amazing NODA reviews has left them asking for you all to keep your fingers crossed for the NODA Awards held early next year! They can’t believe they will have three shows to put forward.
December sees them back in rehearsals for Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, this time joined by a team of 30 children for this family favourite. Performing in February half term in 2023, with six shows including three matinees (Wed, Thurs and Sat), founder and Director Nicola Sandall says, ‘we are having such an amazing time. The last couple of years has taught us to grab every opportunity, and that’s what we have done – and Chitty is proving such fun: I love our group.
‘We are a group of like-minded friends that want to dance, sing, act, perform and have fun. We have become a big family. We work hard, rehearse till late, share our lives, our shows, and are there for each other; it’s like no other theatre group I’ve been a part of. It’s a way of life and we wouldn’t have it any other way.’
Never ones to rest on their laurels, Showstoppers have also just announced that they have secured GREASE for their September 2023 production! Two fabulous musicals in one year, they can’t quite believe their luck! Stamford you’re in for a treat.
Don’t miss this exuberant group’s next production, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang. Join them in February 2023 at the Stamford Corn Exchange. If the group’s reputation is anything to go by, it will be a musical dance extravaganza! Of course, not forgetting the magical Chitty car herself.
Tickets available from www.stamfordcornexchange.co.uk/chitty
Stamford Corn Exchange Box Office: 01780 766455
15-18 February 2023. Wed, Fri & Sat evenings at 7pm. Wed, Thurs and Sat matinee at 2pm Adults £18 Concessions £17 Under 12 £10 (including booking fees).