Written by Emma Fernell
The University of Manchester Drama Society has always been massive (the university’s biggest non-sporting society) but this year we’re determined to make it bigger and better than ever, and so far we’re doing pretty darn well. Our autumn showcase is already underway with three amazing shows, and this year there’s a bit of a twist. For the first time ever, there is a special prize at the MIFTAs (Manchester In Fringe Theatre Awards) for Best Autumn Showcase play. This should inject an extra something special into the Showcase, hopefully making some brilliant plays even more extraordinary.
The first play, ‘Overspill,’ follows three girls whose night out in Manchester takes a turn for the worse when the city is bombed. It runs from the 16th to the 18th of November at Club Underground. This year’s John Thaw Studio production is new student writing play, ‘Not My Cup of Tea’, running from the 23rd to the 25th of November. This play explores ideas of escaping Capitalism and the dream of living for free. Finally our second new writing play, ‘Solve,’ set in an anonymous totalitarian state, runs from the 30th of November to the 2nd of December at Club Underground. Tickets for all plays are £5, £4.50 for students, £4 for Drama Society members and are available from the Martin Harris Centre Box Office and the Box Office in the Student Union. Performances are bound to sell out so book fast to avoid disappointment.
An exciting first for us this year is that we are able to offer an amazing opportunity to perform in the professional space; the Contact Theatre. In line with the work of the Contact this production will be a devised, physical performance, providing Drama Society members a chance to get involved in a wider variety of theatre. This is a really unique and exciting opportunity, so reach out and grab it with both hands!
We may be bringing in a lot of new things but we haven’t forgotten the old favourites – the time for submitting MIFTAs proposal forms is nearly upon us. If you’ve ever thought about being a director, if you’ve written something you really want to get on the stage, or maybe you just have a play in mind that you’d love the chance to put on then this is your chance. We will be putting on seven plays, each of which will be submitted by Drama Society members. All you need to do for a chance to get your play into the festival is to think about your vision and a breakdown of what you will need in terms of budget, tech and rehearsals and when the time comes put it together to make a cracking proposal form. There will be a panel of four theatre and film professionals judging the plays so this is a great chance to get your work noticed.
And last, but certainly not least, we have teamed up with Eurotrips to treat our lucky members with a trip to Berlin! We will be going in early February, so bring your duffle coats and thermals, and it will be for a ridiculously cheap price, including transport and accommodation for four nights.
If you are not yet a member but want to get involved, contact us via our Facebook group: University of Manchester Drama Society or Twitter: @umudramasoc. This is where you find out about all our latest opportunities and events, speaking of which we have our amazing Christmas Party coming up in early December, so keep your eyes peeled for that. If you have any questions feel free to contact us at [email protected]