What's on in Cairns Little Theatre
Ticketlink Bookings 1300 855 835

Opening of Rehearsal Room Speech

This speech was made by our President, Terry Grant 19th February 2014

[br]

Welcome to the official opening of our new rehearsal space … Which we intend to dedicate to Jimmy Barton, in honour of our recently departed founding member.

[br]

This new space is the realisation of a dream long held by Jimmy and many of our members … To enable the group to put on even more high quality theatrical performances than we ever have before.

[br]

Cairns little theatre has a proud tradition of bringing quality amateur theatre productions to the community since 1953. I am always in awe of the fact that our club facilities as we know them  only exist due to the courage, commitment and belief that our founding members the Shoreys, the Bartons and the Carettes showed when they took out mortgages on their own family homes to underwrite the borrowings taken out to build our unique and brilliant theatre.

[br]

Since then we have put on hundreds of shows. The great advantage that this new facility offers us is that we can now have a show in production and the next one in rehearsal thus enabling us to put on more shows. Our hope in the future is possibly to have five main plays and five fringe plays plus two junior productions every year. However, at our last committee meeting the idea was discussed at length and we decided for next year at least to just aim for four majors as it is very difficult to avoid clashing with other events in town. Happily it would appear we have nine plays being put forward for consideration by directors which is fabulous!

[br]

You would also be aware that on the first weekend of April this year we are also hosting the Far North Qld Amateur One act play festival.

[br]

The key feature of this space is that it is exactly the same size as the stage so we will be able to rehearse here then move into the theatre without having to grapple with hugely different surroundings. It also offers more storage space for costumes etc. This year this extra space will be invaluable in accommodating all the people, props and paraphernalia that are part and parcel of running the one act play festival.

[br]

Most of our work in putting on a show of course is done behind the scenes…months of thinking, learning lines, rehearsing, designing and constructing sets, working out the lighting, costumes and sound effects. All of this work goes unseen by our audiences , a little similar to an ice berg. Most of it is not seen… And this new space reflects that. It took massive amounts of time, effort and commitment and is a wonderful asset to us, but will most likely never be seen by the bulk of our paying public..so we wanted to ‘show it off’ to you tonight. We know that 99 percent of our work happens off stage, out of sight. And we are happy with that… Just as we are enormously happy with our new rehearsal space.

[br]

Over the years Cairns Little Theatre has been blessed to have a management committee who have worked tirelessly and selflessly to maintain and grow the organisation.  We wouldn’t be in the position to acquire this building without their efforts – again largely unseen by membership and the public.   At this time I would like to thank management committees present and past for their valuable stewardship, dedication and vision.

[br]

Special thanks go to Frank Joel and Gill Birch who put in untold extra hours seeking funding, organising builders, drawing up plans, negotiating with Council and so on to see this part of our dream come to fruition. We owe a massive debt to Gill for being scrupulously disciplined in controlling our spending.. no small feat in a club like ours! … which is evidenced by the fact that we have been able to build this great asset and still be in the black… only just but we didn’t need to borrow for this project. Frank showed great patience and determination in dealing with the practical side of the Undertaking… I believe he never swore at anyone in the whole journey! Even when we discovered that one of the shipping containers missed the boat and stayed behind in China. Please join me in applauding the tremendous contribution Frank and Gill have made to create our new rehearsal space.

[br]

Ladies and gentlemen, I want to thank all of you for your support for the Rondo – only you know how much you have contributed to The Rondo, and I thank you for that and for joining us here tonight.

[br]

I now declare the “Rondo Rehearsal Room, which we dedicate to the memory of Jimmy Barton, officially open and invite Lori Barton to cut the ribbon and unveil the plaque.