THE GRAFFHAM Rustics Amateur Dramatic Society is celebrating national acclaim and giving itself a new look.
The group has won an award for excellence from the National Operatic and Drama Association for its production of The Ladykillers last May in Graffham Empire Hall.
Spokesman for the Rustics, which has now been renamed ‘GRADS’, Neil Castle told the Observer: “We are all absolutely delighted and the news is very encouraging for GRADS members who are about to put on their latest production in a new venue.
“They will be performing at the Leconfield Hall in Petworth.
“This new venue provides Graffham Rustics’ audiences with raked seating, a separate bar, disabled access with a lift to the auditorium, a hearing aid loop induction system as well as a large free car park.”
When it was released in November 2013 for amateur performance, the Rustics quickly secured a performing licence for the West End smash hit, The Ladykillers.
The production was performed to full and appreciative houses at Graffham last May.
Based on the well-known film of the 1950s starring Alec Guinness and featuring a very young Peter Sellers, The Ladykillers stage play was written by Graham Linehan, who also wrote Father Ted and The IT Crowd.
It tells the classic black comedy tale of a sweet little old lady, alone in her house, pitted against a gang of criminal misfits who will stop at nothing.
With two well-received comedies behind them, laughter continues as the theme for the next play. GRADS will be appearing as members of Farndale Avenue Housing Estate Townswomen’s Guild Dramatic Society at the Leconfield Hall on May 21, 22 and 23.
The four ladies and stage manager of this infamous group are a force to be reckoned with.
The sheer scale of their ambition in mounting ‘Murder at Checkmate Manor’ is only matched by their overwhelming confidence in their abilities to master all 14 parts.
As with so many well-intentioned dramatic enterprises, it is with a degree of luck everything will go all right on the night for the intrepid ladies.
Tickets are available from Bay Tree Bakery, Golden Square, Petworth, online at www.graffhamrustics.co.uk and new for 2015 is the facility to pay by credit card for online bookings. They are also available on 01798 344 227. All tickets are £10.