Sidmouth’s summer play festival gets off to ‘wonderful’ start

The cast of Sidmouth's Summer play festival get it underway in Caught in the Net

The cast of Sidmouth's Summer play festival get it underway in Caught in the Net - Credit: Archant

Theatre-goers have enjoyed a ‘wonderful’ start to Sidmouth’s summer play festival, which has completed its first production.

The popular event opened with Ray Cooney’s farce Caught in the Net, which ran from June 22 - 28.

The Sidmouth Play Festival is the longest-surviving weekly rep season in the country, performing 12 classic plays in as many weeks using the same company of actors.

Graham Whitlock, theatre manager for the Manor Pavilion, said: “It’s been wonderful to hear the audience having such a good time with our first play. Caught In The Net is so much fun and I’ve really enjoyed hearing the response from the audience every night. They’ve been literally shrieking with laughter.”

Crowds are set to pack into the Manor Pavilion until September to watch the productions selected by Paul Taylor-Mills.

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The producer, who is at the helm for the fifth year, praised his cast and crew.

He said: “Again, my fantastic team have produced a top-quality show for the people of Sidmouth. I am constantly amazed at what we can produce in only seven days. The turnaround for each production is so tight but the company always manages to create something special.”

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The 2017 season features:

• Murder in Company by Philip King and John Boland - June 29 – July 5;

• The Odd Couple by Neil Simon - July 6 – 12;

• Ladies in Lavender by Shaun McKenna - July 13 – 19;

• Dial M for Murder by Frederick Knott - July 20 – 26;

• Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte - July 27 – August 2;

• The Birds by Conor McPherson - August 3 – 4 and August 12 – 16;

• Relative Values by Noel Coward - August 17 – 23;

• Birthday Suite by Robin Hawdon - August 24 – 30;

• Absent Friends by Alan Ayckbourn - August 31 – September 6;

• Hobson’s Choice by Harold Brighouse - September 7 – 13;

• House Guest by Francis Durbridge - September 14 – 22.

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