Ten local theatre companies have been put up for nominations in the prestigious Rose Bowl awards, a theatre “Oscar” awards night that celebrates amateur theatre within the South West.

Now in its 52nd year the Rose Bowl had ninety nine entries from across the whole of the South West, with companies battling it out for one of the nineteen awards which will be announced at a glittering awards presentation on 18 October at the Webbington Hotel and Spa in Loxton.


Curtain Up Theatre Schools have received an incredible four nominations for their production of Les Misérables including the First Corporate Coup de Theatre Award for Javert’s death plunge, Youth Award for Best Actor for Lucas Porter as Javert, Barbara MaCrae Youth Award for Best Actress for Natalie Acheson as Eponine and Jean Fennell Award for Best Youth Production with Les Misérables.

Tristan Carter, Director of Curtain Up Theatre School says:

“Youth theatre is where it all begins, at Curtain Up we are privileged to work with so many talented young people and hope that the memories we create together will help shape their futures. It was with delight that we learnt that our production of Les Miserables has received so many nominations from The Rose Bowl which recognises the talent, hard work and dedication that goes in to such a production. Performances of this calibre require an enormous amount of team work and commitment from people from all walks of life so we are very proud and thankful for the nomination of Best Youth Musical and Coup de Theatre -it is a great achievement for the whole team. We are especially pleased for Lucas and Natalie for their personal nominations, they are definitely ones to watch out for in the future.


Zenith Youth Theatre Company have also received two nominations, the Youth Award For Best Actor for Charles Hollingsworth for the role of Miles Gloriosus in a Funny Thing Happened On The Way To The Forum and the Jean Fennell Award for Best Youth Production with the Phantom of the Opera. Artistic Director Scott Rogers comments:

We are once again delighted to have received nominations for both our shows this year. It’s a testament to hard committed team work, from cast, crew and all the volunteers.”


Keynsham Light Opera Group received two nominations for its production of the Wizard of Oz directed by Petra Schofield. The production has been nominated for the Walter Hawkins Award for Creativity and Design for the costumes and the Stage Electrics Award for Technical Achievement for the lighting. Petra Schofield, Director said:

I was very happy with the vision of Oz that we created. It needed to be bright and new, away from the trappings of the field and the costume team had a big task following the designs I gave them but they rose to the challenge beautifully and I am thrilled that their results have been acknowledged by the Rose Bowl Team.  We had standalone designs as well as pieces becoming part of the scenery, such as the trees in the forest which were made by Debbie Harvey. The rest of the costume team were Pat Cleverdon, Joanne Meredith, Karen Spencer and hired pieces were from Stage Style Costumes in Kingswood Bristol. The lighting from the outset needed to be really creative due to venue constraints and it also had to link into the overall vision and direction. Luke John Emmett is always my first choice as a lighting designer and on this occasion he really did an incredible job. He is one of a few designer who diligently attend rehearsals and talk at length with the creative team to buy into a final vision rather than do his “own thing.” He creates some wonderful pictures and this production was no exception.”


The Argyle Players received three nominations, two for their production of Lord Arthur Saville’s Crime (Award for Best Supporting Actor for Michael Davis as Banes and the Manor Printing Award for Best Publicity Material) and one for their production of Sleuth (Walter Hawkings Award for Creativity and Design for the Set). Chairman of The Argyle Players, Michael Burgess, commented as follows:

We are delighted to be nominated in three different categories, especially in the knowledge that the standards of the Rose Bowl are particularly high, and this demonstrates the hard work of everyone involved in our productions.” 

Competition for the Bristol Evening Post Award for Best Musical Production will be fierce with Bath Operatic and Dramatic Society – BODS nominated for Hairspray at the Theatre Royal Bath, Encore Northenders nominated for Honk!, Saltford Community Association nominated for I Love You, You’re Perfect, Now Change and Spare Room Theatre Company nominated for Spring Awakening, all will be battling it out against other companies from the South West to win this award.


Juliette Coad, Director of Hairspray said:

“I am immensely proud of all the cast and production team who were part of Hairspray which was performed at Bath Theatre Royal in February this year. BODS is delighted to receive a Rose Bowl nomination for Best Musical. As a director you depend on so many people to bring the show to fruition and without this “team” the show would not have happened.”




Andrew English, Producer of Spring Awakening:

“We were really taken by surprise by the level of attention we got for this production. Spring Awakening is one of our favourite musicals but it certainly isn’t to everyone’s taste due to its dark subject matter. We are over the moon to have received this nomination.”

Other nominations include Bath Light Operatic Group – BLOG nominated for Technical Achievement for Lighting (lighting design by Derek Lee) for their production of Jesus Christ Superstar at the Theatre Royal Bath, and Timsbury Theatre Group who were nominated for the Walter Hawkings Award for Creativity and Design for Set and Properties for Dick Whittington.



Helen Feierabend, Chairman Bath Light Operatic Group:

BLOG are delighted to have been nominated for a Rose Bowl Award. There is so much amateur talent in Bath and to be recognised by these prestigious awards is an honour. It’s marvellous that it’s not just performers who are recognised. It’s a real team effort.”


Local companies will have to wait until October to find out if they have won the awards when they will come together and join the four-hundred-strong contingent of nominees from across the South West.