Local thespians on stage at the Playhouse

Our review of The Grapes of Wrath, currently showing at the West Yorkshire Playhouse, referred to a ‘chorus’. We spoke to two members of this amateur group which complements the professional actors on stage.

Amy Wilson and Kev Phillips

Amy Wilson from Hunslet and Kev Phillips from Beeston both responded to adverts for an open audition and were chosen to join the group. Kev is part of a writers group and wanted to improve his writing by spending some time on stage.

“I found it challenging particularly the dance, but it’s been a fantastic experience, I’ve met people I wouldn’t normally come into contact with.”

Amy performed in the York Mystery Plays a few years ago and decided to repeat the experience.

“Everyone is so enthusiastic and friendly” she said.

The 40 strong group spent six weeks in rehearsal at evening and weekend sessions. They will be performing for the full run in Leeds until Saturday 10 June.

West Yorkshire Playhouse’s Director of Creative Engagement Alex Ferris said:

“We are delighted to have found a group of 40 fantastic individuals to take part in this show, not to mention the 6 young people from our Youth Theatre. This story is so pertinent to now – it’s been thoroughly fascinating to hear everyone’s take on the themes in rehearsals and how much they’ve taken the story into their hearts. Brilliantly, the next phase of the project will see these same members of the community performing a newly commissioned play by Mark Catley, BAFTA nominated for his writing on BBC’s Casualty, continuing our dialogue with people in West Yorkshire and beyond.”