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Cheddleton WI - August 2014

By Leek Post and Times  |  Posted: August 13, 2014

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THE evening was opened by our president Doreen Hughes.

She welcomed members to the meeting and Jerusalem was sung. Apologies were given for those absent or ill. Happy Birthday was sung to the birthday ladies.

Mal Smith read the minutes from the last meeting and all the correspondence from Head Office.

Doreen Introduced the speaker for the evening John Brooking; 'The Lighter side of Costume Design for the Theatre'.

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John showed us a very interesting slide show, which was lead through discussion, through the various jobs he did throughout his 30 years in this line of business.

He wanted to be an actor but got a job and went to art school for four years to be a theatre designer, which he got to design each character along with the set and costumes.

He learnt to wig make, scene-making, costume design and designed sets, which they made a model first with drawings to help explain how the set would move and look.

Lots of discussion was needed to get everything working well.

John has made hats for Cilla Black and Dame Edna.

He worked at Alton Towers for three years, where he made and designed costume characters, the set and costumes for the ice shows.

We learned how some of the characters were created like Peter Rabbit. He left Alton Towers and then worked from home where they made costumes for theatres, and theme park characters.

John also makes lots of costumes for pantomimes and plays for the Lichfield Mystery Plays.

The talk was very interesting, giving members a chance to see what goes on in the theatre world.

At the end of the evening one of the members had a chance to wear a pantomime costume, she needed help to get in the costume as it was quite heavy with zips and press studs. She looked the part when fully dressed!

Doreen gave a vote of thanks to John for a very interesting evening.

Next month's meeting is a hands on evening making lavender hats.

Competition winner - Theatre Memorabillia was Ann Hall. Raffle winners - Pam Pegg, Katie Turner and Mal Smith.

Doreen thanked the tea ladies, then closed the evening hoping everyone had a safe journey back home.

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