Play In A Week is an annual week-long fully inclusive project, which enables actors with learning and/or physical disabilities to enjoy the magic and benefits of participating in a theatre show and putting on public performances in a real theatre.
Play In A Week has been held in the southeast of England for 19 years, and is open to all.
Starting on a Monday morning each July, between 40 and 50 enthusiastic and talented participants, a raft of volunteer helpers, along with a team of specialist professionals start work at the Nomad Theatre in East Horsley.
The actors work hard everyday throughout the week to rehearse, learning lines, songs and dance routines from scratch. There are no “limitations” on who can be an actor at Play In A Week. Everyone is welcome regardless of (dis)ability. All we require is that people come along with enthusiasm, energy and team spirit, and are able to attend every day in order to learn their parts and be an equal part of the Company.
We engage a small number of specialist professionals to make all this possible for our actors! An experienced Playwright is commissioned to write our play each year. It is unique because of the large number of cast members involved and the goal of ensuring that everyone has a worthwhile part to play in the production. We also aim to include ever popular song and dance numbers, so these must form part of the storyline all of which is written and tailored to suit us!
Our Director then manages and drives the week’s rehearsals; inspiring cast, crew and volunteers to stretch themselves, achieve personal goals, and form a cohesive and supportive team having lots of fun!
The Choreographer designs and teaches both dance and movement routines, and helps to direct physical movement around the stage.
The Musical Director composes, writes and teaches the company several songs each year, usually done completely from scratch. He is also a sound effects wizard who provides “mood” music to order and well as whatever other noises, bangs, crashes, and bizzare sounds the Director decides to throw into every scene of the show!
Off stage other participants, along with volunteers, can be found hard at work all over the theatre during the rehearsal week making costumes, constructing and finding props and scenery to order! They are also making magic happen in the technical box by planning the customised sound and lighting which gives the final production a professional finish. Surtitling is written to help improve communication which is delivered live during each performance.
Even as the daytime activity dies down and the actors leave the building everyday, there is still a hive of activity going on. With the stage clear and safe, large items of scenery and backdrops are painted and put in place, lighting rigs can be built, and even the stage floor itself is painted.
At the end the busy week, everything somehow comes together beautifully as the curtain rises on Saturday night, and a paying public audience get to see the results of everyone’s hard work. We have a Sunday matinee show too, and without fail everyone goes home at the end of it all totally elated and justifiably proud of their achievements.
Work then starts straight away for the team of organisers to kick off the year-long programme of planning and fundraising for next time.
Monday 23rd July – Friday 27th July please be at the theatre, ready to start at 10.00am. We will be finishing at 3.30pm. Please dress comfortably!
Saturday 28th July – Please be at the theatre for 12.00pm. The estimated finishing time will be 9.00pm. Bring a packed lunch AND supper with you. There will be a dress rehearsal in the afternoon, followed by the evening performance. Please expect to wear all black clothing and shoes, unless otherwise instructed.
Sunday 29th July – Please be at the theatre for 1.00pm. Estimating finishing time will be 6.00pm (after the party). Please expect to wear all black clothing and shoes, unless otherwise instructed. After the matinee performance there will be an after show 20th birthday party – All friends, family, support workers and volunteers are invited to join the cast and crew’s celebration by staying on for soft drinks and snacks!
The car park is back to normal this year, so parking is available but please give consideration to those less mobile, and if you are able to park elsewhere on the surrounding roads and walk to the theatre, please do so in order to leave spaces for those who need them most.
Please also be aware that on Sunday only there will be a lot of road closures in the area because of the Ride London Cycling event. If you are travelling from outside the cycle route area, the theatre IS accessible, but ONLY from the A3 via the B2039.
Please allow plenty of extra time for travelling on Sunday. A map can be found at: Link to Google Map
Sandwiches and salads will be available to buy at the theatre at reasonable prices, on Monday to Friday inclusive, courtesy of Richard from Arty Tarty Foods. Please bring money each day, or else bring a packed lunch if you prefer.
Tea, coffee and squash will be provided free for everyone. If you want any other soft drinks, you may be able to buy them from the bar or else please bring your own.
If you have not yet paid, please bring cash or a cheque (payable to “The Nomads”) with you on Monday 23rd July. This is to pay your Nomad membership subscription, and your voluntary contribution towards the cost of Play In A Week if you have agreed to make one.
Nomad membership = £15.00
Voluntary contribution = £50.00
Total = £15.00 or £65.00
Thank you for volunteering! It is your support which makes the week possible.
Please follow the above timings and instructions, except for payments.
Any information updates and changes to times will be displayed daily on a board in the foyer area. Additionally, we will do our best to put this type of information on the Facebook page and website as well.
Please keep an eye on these during the week, and ask Helen, Geoff, Lisa or Tracey about anything you are not sure of.
Finally, TICKETS are now available. Please see the box on this page for further details and remember to tell family and friends to book up soon and come along and see the show!
The first Play In Week, “When Did You Last See Your Glasses?”, was staged in 1999. This means that 2018, ‘Keeping Score‘, will be our 20th annual production.
Play In A Week 2018 will happen over the week starting on Monday 23rd July.
Tickets are now available for the two public performances on Saturday 28th and Sunday 29th.
Online at: Ticketsource
By phone: 01483 284747, and leave a message on the answerphone, the boxoffice will call you back.
In person: Call in to the theatre on Saturdays 10-12.30. You can pay by cash, cheque or credit card.