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‘Feed me Seymour!’ Crawley school brings Little Shop Of Horrors to life

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From the moment the lights go down there is a buzz in the auditorium.

Six dancers poised in perfect unison await the build up of the opening number and when those first beats hit and the well rehearsed moves begin you know you are in for a treat.

And when Annie Hitchcock starts the show as Mr Mushnik with his troubled flower shop you are instantly brought into this crazy musical world.

Mr. Mushnik played by Annie Hitchcock.

The Gatwick School may be the youngest secondary school in the town but the talented staff they have brought onboard is very evident in the way the students full potential is wonderfully brought out in public performance.

L-R Wiktoria Nowicka and Joseph Banbury as Audrey and Seymour.

Little Shop Of Horrors has been a roaring success ever since its original film back in 1960. Since then the musical has entertained audiences around the world and when the remake came out in 1986 it brought a whole new lease of life to the story.

It’s a musical that can be a real challenger for a school to put on which is probably why it has already gained so much excitement both amongst students and parents.

Take one ‘geeky’ flower store worker who one day, during a ‘total eclipse of the sun’, discovers a strange talking plant who helps to turn around a struggling business and VOILA! you have the makings of something very original and extremely funny.

Dylan Bendall (L) plays the dark character of Orin Scrivello

The key character of Seymour is played with real gusto by Joseph Banbury who manages to bring the true characteristics of the timid yet secretly brave Seymour to life and who you really feel as he has to contend with all the problems Audrey II brings him.

While Wiktoria Nowicka as Audrey manages to illustrate the naive but loving character even when confronted by the brilliantly nasty dentist Orin Scrivello who is played far too well by Dylan Bendall that you immediately hate the character and can’t wait for the plant to… no I wont say what, you need to watch it to find out.

Katie Steere plays Audrey II.

Taking on the role of Audrey II (the plant) is not an easy task. Shouldering the mammoth task of this character with songs to match, Katie Steere manages to not only bring her own take to the role but invites the audience to join in with some of the biggest numbers of the show, a task that takes some confidence but which she pulls off with apparent ease.

But no show can create an atmosphere without a supporting cast and all of those involved in this production do so with such passion you want to jump up with them and join in.

Director Rosie Townsend and Vince Martin have done an incredible job of engaging as many students as possible within the production and every single one is visually excited and passionate to be involved in it.

But I cannot write a review piece without also mentioning the exceptional work of those backstage whose hard work does not go unnoticed.

Sound Technician Daisy Hitchcock

Daisy Hitchcock on sound, Tyler Kenyon on lighting and Kelly Orchard with makeup are all integral in bringing the production to life and with Muscial Director Katie Boud bringing the voices of the students to life you are left enjoing every single part of this wonderful production.

Lighting technician Tyler Kenyon

To say this is a roaring success of a production would be no lie. It’s a fun, exciting and powerful production and one you should certainly take the whole family to see.

The show starts tonight, 11th Feb and runs 12th and 13th Feb with doors opening at 5:15pm. Tickets are £7 for adults (16+) and £5 for children and you can purchase tickets from the schools website by clicking here.

Opinion

Crawley Councillor who resigned from Labour party is…err… STILL a Labour councillor for West Sussex Council

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You are going to have to bear with me on this one because even I am struggling to understand how this is even possible or allowed – well actually it may not be if party rules are to be followed.

Remember last week when two Labour councillors resigned? Well one of them was and still is a County Councillor – so you might expect that leaving Labour and becoming an Independent would mean – well – that you have left Labour and become Independent – DUH!

Stupid thing to say isn’t it, I mean it’s obvious. What other way is there to think?

Apparently a completely different way, that’s how!

For West Sussex County Council has now confirmed that the EX-Labour Borough Councillor Karen Sudan is in-fact still representing Labour on the County Council.

How is this even allowed?

This raises a worrying and somewhat confusing rule. For if this is totally ok with local government then it means you could represent one party as a county councillor and a completely different party for the borough.

But let’s add to the mix that the Labour Rules state that in order to represent the party you MUST be a member. But Cllr Sudan is no longer a member.

There is also something else here that would not be a miss within some conspiracy theory. IF Cllr Sudan was to stop representing Labour in the County Council, then the amount paid in allowances changes dramatically. Having 5 members instead of 4 allows more than £6K in additional allowances to be paid to the groups leader.

A West Sussex County Council spokesperson said:

“Cllr Karen Sudan has informed us that she remains a member of the Labour Group on West Sussex County Council. The County Council is aware that Cllr Sudan is now an independent on Crawley Borough Council.”

So where does this leave us at the moment. Well if you are one of the voters who ticked the box for Cllr Sudan then you may be thinking, what party have I voted for, and you would not be criticised for thinking so.

What is needed is clarity of the situation…not an independent Councillor waving a Labour flag.

Both Cllr Sudan and Cllr Michael Jones have been approached for comment.

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