Auditions for 2018 Clover Showtime Awards Revue

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Clover Showtime 2017
Clover Showtime 2017

Bob Eveleigh writes: Auditions for the 28th annual Clover Showtime Awards young talent development revue, Let the Good Times Roll, will be held August 12 and 13.

This is the 2018 edition of Nelson Mandela Bay’s top family song and dance show of the year. Auditions will be held at the Charlo Primary School Hall, corner Carrington Street and Miles Avenue, Port Elizabeth on Saturday and Sunday, August 12 and 13.

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On Saturday, starting at 1.30pm, singers and actors will be auditioned while, on Sunday, from 2.30pm, they will return, together with specialist dancers (tap dancers should bring tap shoes), for the movement and dance try-outs.

The show will run, as was the case over the past two years, presented in collaboration with the PE Musical and Dramatic Society, in the Little Theatre from Monday, January 22, to Saturday, January 27, next year, with all performances in theatre seating style, the Junior Clover Awards Ceremonies on Tuesday, January 23, (high and primary school productions) and the main awards on Friday, January 26, both at 7pm.

Clover Showtime Auditions. Gwen Davis (prod. secretary), Brenda Ower (special assistant to producer, director & directorial mentor), Marlene Pieterse (directorial mentor), Siobhan Day (director & choreographer) & Wayne Hughes (musical vocal director & arranger - Chris Gertsch
Gwen Davis (prod. secretary), Brenda Ower (special assistant to producer, director & directorial mentor), Marlene Pieterse (directorial mentor), Siobhan Day (director & choreographer) & Wayne Hughes (musical vocal director & arranger – Chris Gertsch

Rehearsals will start in early October, concurrent with the week of the school holidays and continue over all subsequent Saturday mornings and weekend afternoons, until December 2 and 3, and then cease for resumption on Tuesday, January 2, next year.

As with all its predecessors, this revue will boast the same production team as 2017’s A Grand Night for Singing: Marlene Pieterse, Wayne Huighes and Siobhan Day.

But there will be one major change this year with Siobhan, who staged the dance numbers last year, taking over as both director (in her adult theatre debut) and choreographer of all the many song numbers and dance and company routines, except for tap, which will be staged by Sim’one Buchner, of The Ellen Bunting Academy of Dance.

Marlene will be mentoring Siobhan, as she did in 2016 with Marelize Barnard handling Pansa Eastern Cape’s Bat Boy, while Wayne is again the musical and vocal director on his sixth Clover Showtime revue outing, with Lance Bright and Rocky Mann once more functioning as technical consultants.

The team will be seeking a fully multi-cultural core cast of 12 performers – eight females and four males – essentially within the usual Showtime development ages of 14 (turning 15 before January 27) to 22 years, with as many all-rounders (singers/actors/dancers) as possible included, plus a dance troupe of six girls, who also will be required to sing in ensemble numbers in the show.

The revue will also again feature a group of ten pupils from Charlo Primary School, who will not, however, be selected at these auditions but separately at school by Wayne Hughes.

The musical score and comedy will salute the 1950s, a decade that has come to be known as the brightest in US showbiz history, including numbers made famous by such stars as Teresa Brewer, Patti Page, Doris Day Julie London, Connie Francis and many others, while the males include Pat Boone, Elvis Presley, Sammy Davis Junior, Bing Crosby and Frank Sinatra.

The Broadway and Hollywood hits to be saluted include Singin’ in the Rain, The Bandwagon, My Fair Lady, The Pajama Game, West Side Story and Bye Bye Birdie, a 1960s Great White Way success that will also be featured.

The period also saw the initial birth of rock ‘n roll by such stars as Bill Haley and the Comets, Fats Domino, Buddy Holly, Presley and Boone and featured the start of Frank Sinatra’s amazing second rise to fame, while the comedy gems come from the one-liners of the likes of ’50s headliners Bob Hope, Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis, Sammy Davis Junior, Groucho Marx and Phyllis Diller.

For the auditions, singers, who may bring their own backing tracks or perform with their own accompanists (or sing a cappella), should also particularly acquaint themselves – most easily via YouTube – with the songs of the decade but will all be taught one of these at the try-outs.

For further information about the auditions or any aspect of Clover Showtime 2018: Let the Good Times Roll, e-mail Bob Eveleigh at beveleigh@centrestage.co.za .or call him (all hours) on 083 452 7556.

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