Theatrecraft Herne Bay

Theatrecraft has had a presence here in Herne Bay since 1948!


Formerly known as The William Askew Players, Theatrecraft was formed on the 27th May 1948, launching themselves on an unsuspecting public with the presentation of The Barretts of Wimpole Street. Originally the intention was to present only plays but as Theatrecraft developed it took on the task of reviving the town’s annual Christmas pantomime in 1957, an event which is still going strong to this day. A further widening of Theatrecraft’s scope of activity occurred in 1964 when modern musicals were included in their repertoire.

The award winning amateur dramatic society are truly part of Herne Bay’s culture and community and CommunityAd had the pleasure of speaking to a rep from Theatrecraft who has this to say of our town: “it’s a welcoming and friendly community and is a hidden gem of North Kent. Beautiful beaches, a live music scene, a choice of theatres, some beautiful independent shops, good pubs; Herne Bay is really a town to be proud of”.


Just how good does it feel to actually be planning events with Theatrecraft given the last 18 months?

We are beyond excited at being able to present our first production since January 2020. We are pulling out all the stops to make Cinderella a magical and professional production. We have had some great new talent joining us on our production side – scenery designers, carpenters, artists, lighting and visual experts, costume designers, all of which will give us the ability to create something very special for our audiences.

It was important that we responded creatively to the pandemic and to ensure that our members could continue to have something they could focus on. So, for the first time in our history we entered the Kent Drama Association’s Radio Play Festival (this was in place of their normal Full Length Play Festival). It was a completely new learning curve for us, holding auditions and rehearsals online and getting to grips with recording and editing. We were absolutely delighted when our entry, Far Side of the Moore by Sean Grundy, came joint fourth overall and won the Best Actor in a Cameo Role Category.


Why is it so important for the local community to support theatre productions and local theatre groups now more than ever?

Theatre boosts our local economies, buying materials for set and costumes, hiring venues and musicians, bringing trade to local restaurants and bars and it also creates a community spirit. Our annual pantomimes see upwards of 1,000 people attending at The King’s Hall Theatre in Herne Bay; families coming together across all generations and a great feeling of joy. Amateur theatre also plays a great part in our social and cultural lives, contributing positively to mental health, allowing young performers to learn team skills and building self confidence.


That support can take many forms from attending a show to being in one, tell us more, please?

Theatrecraft is always on the look out for new talent across the board, whether that be singing, dancing, acting, set building, costume making, lighting, sound. There is always something to be done and Theatrecraft is very much a family, partaking in social events throughout the year and building close bonds with its members. Head across to our website for more details.


Finally, why should readers be pencilling in January 6th firmly in their diaries?

Cinderella is the nation’s favourite pantomime and this year Theatrecraft will be creating something especially magical and showstopping. Full of silly jokes, crazy characters, audience participation, slapstick routines and tunes you will be singing along to, our audience really do not want to be missing this.


Are there any other dates our readers should be taking note of?

Cinderella dates at The King’s Hall Theatre, Herne Bay are Thursday 6th to Sunday 9th January 2022. With evening shows (Thu, Fri and Sat) starting at 7.00 pm and matinees (Sat and Sun) starting at 2.30 pm.

In 2022, Theatrecraft is also performing ‘Allo ‘Allo at The Playhouse Whitstable from Wed 13th to Sat 16th April 2022 and then we are back to The King’s Hall Theatre for the amazing award-winning musical Made in Dagenham Wed 6th until Sat 9th July 2022. Tickets and further information can be found on our website.


Anything else to add at all?

Just that we can’t wait to be bringing live theatre back to Herne Bay and seeing our audience members back with us, both new and old.


Find out more including ticket purchases and how to join the team via the Theatrecraft Herne Bay website.

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