Newcastle Trip - Oliver The Musical (21 May 2012)

Supporting Stevie Hutchinson as he tours the UK in the UK Tour of Oliver!

CTS will be organising a trip for students who want to visit the production, a letter will be sent out shortly. Students will be able to shop, have a meal and then meet up for the show in what will be a fun day out in the city!

Finale (20 May 2012)

Conservatoire de Theatre students will start auditions for their new production. Finale will be in casting during June 2012, rehearsals will be throughout July and August with the show opening in September 2012.

The production will introduce a whole host of new musicals to students and our audiences. Conservatoire will also bring some of your favourite tracks from some well known musicals to life. Click here to visit the production!

One Scholarship Left! (19 May 2012)

After the success of launching our scholarship scheme earlier this year, we are pleased to announce that there is only one left.

For more information on Scholarships please click here!

Gabrielle Green in new BBC Drama (15 May 2012)

Congratulations to former CTSer Gabrielle Green who has been cast in an exciting new BBC drama series for children!

The fantasy show tells the story of Maddy Smith, who seems like an ordinary girl – but things are not what they seem. After all, when you can hear ultrasound, pick out a scent from a mile away or see in the dark, it can be hard to act "ordinary".

She's faster and stronger than she appears, her senses are razor-sharp – and every full moon she has to lock her parents in the cellar. The truth is Maddy hides a secret even her closest friends don't know about. Look into her eyes, but don't get too close… because Maddy is a wolfblood.

Gabby was with Conservatoire de Theatre at CTS for 4 years training in Musical Theatre, Gabby also performed with The Voice Theatre Company.

Frankie and Johnny in the Clare de Lune (25 Apr 2012)

This new production is the first production from The Voice Theatre Company in 2012.

Rehearsals began last week, the production is a two hander (a play with only two persons) and has been designed to push the boundaries with our actors.

More information will be available soon. Click here to visit the production!

On The Floor Megamix DVD (29 Mar 2012)

We are thrilled to announce that we have been able, on this occasion to film and take images of much of the backstage footage, rehearsals, technicals and some excerpts of the performance. We are working very hard to put this together for parents to buy on the door of the final performance on Sunday! Although we must have orders in before the weekend!

The DVD is high up on our list of priorities and we do hope to have them all completed by the final performance, however if not be rest assured they will be ready for collection within the coming days after the final performance.

Please book your copies with the box office this week. The DVD is a 10 minute collectors momento of the entire process of the coming together of this wonderful Young Set production. It must be pointed out that this is not a copy of the full performance!

Please remember you can order your copies by leaving a voicemail at the box office! Each DVD is priced at £5 per copy.

We hope you enjoy the fun and excitement that goes on behind the scenes!

Portia Calvert Takes Charge of Dominion House (16 Mar 2012)

Portia Calvert was chosen by staff to lead Dominion Principal House. Portia will begin her training this week. A huge congratulations to Portia.

Revue 2 - Further Casting Announced (16 Mar 2012)

Congratulations to the following students for being cast in the following roles...

Olivia Calvert - Elle
Portia Calvert - Margot
Pilar - Megan Quinn
Serena - Molly Greig


No more casting will be announced as we head into heavy production!

Tickets for this production go on sale 17th March 2012. Click Here for more information about Revue 2.

Student of the Month for February 2012 (16 Mar 2012)

Winner - Megan Quinn (Prince Edward House)

A huge well done Megan, this is well deserved!

Student of the Month Nominations

Megan Quinn
Paige Harris
Tamsyn Watson Smith
Jason Matthews

The four students were chosen by their principals last week for good behaviour, being inspirational to others, working hard and outstanding effort and contribution to CTS. The winner has been awarded a certificate, a £10 gift voucher and two reduced tickets for a production at CTS of their choice! (see individual productions for details).

These student have shown particular promise over the course of the last four weeks. Their work ethic and behaviour have been outstanding. Well done to you all but sadly there can be but one winner!

Young Set Soloists for "On The Floor" (16 Mar 2012)

A huge well done to the students who passed two round of auditions for solos/singing roles in the new production ON THE FLOOR.

The auditions were held over the weekend and recalls were Tuesday, the youngsters did so well to battle nerves and were every bit the young professionals we are training them to become!

New Uniform Despatched (16 Mar 2012)

The new garments will be delivered early next week, they will be handed out to each student at their next class once delivered. Parents are advised to follow the washing advice given out with each item.

We will be asking for feedback from parents in Autumn regarding the quality of the items, we are also happy to announce that we will be looking into some vests in a range of colours for younger students in the coming weeks!

A group photograph is planned with the entire school in May 2012 in full inform! We hope you enjoy!

SiNG LiVE (7 Mar 2012)

SiNG LiVE is a new voice workshop for those interested in singing and live vocal performance.SiNG LiVE will be held in the CTS studio and will be informative, fun and packed with singing and more singing!

Click here to visit our SiNG LiVE page for full information.

See you there!

Pre-Production (7 Mar 2012)

As we head into pre-production for ON THE FLOOR it is important that everyone connected with the school keeps themselves up to date with the changes and extensions of hours for classes via the online schedule.

Even if you're not part of the production, it is likely that ALL class hours will fluctuate due to us making way for technicals in the coming weeks. Letters are regularly given out to Core and Beginner Young Set students, however last minute changes can occur and we need everyone to be updated! Singing from them same hymn sheet as it were!

Please refresh your devices before checking the online calendar and please make it a priority to check before class for extended hours and changed times.

Advanced Young Set and Conservatoire students will not receive letters but are expected to check online as usual.

Twitter! (7 Mar 2012)

Thank you to everyone who is following us on twitter now! We are releasing information updates, backstage footage and rehearsal images as they occur! We will not be releasing the full content to our Facebook profile at this current time. Updates will be fed through Facebook and Twitter, whilst only a small amount of photography content will be released to Facebook.

Join us at @CTSONLINE to join in all the fun!

What is (C) and (U)? (7 Mar 2012)

Ever wondered what these little abbreviations are for on the student schedule?

C simply means that there is CONTENT held within the diary entry which is of benefit to those involved. C also reminds you to CLICK to open the entry to take a look!

U means UPDATED, there has been a change to that particular diary entry recently and you should make yourself aware to the alteration! Where entries are updated, the date and time of the update will be listed.

This is part of our commitment to keeping communication standards high between the school and students/parents, we are working hard to making CTS be easier to be a part of and updating you as efficiently as possible.

New Principal (1 Mar 2012)

A new season and a new principal!

Conservatoire de Theatre and Advanced Young Set require a new principal to lead the Dominion House Team.

In light of former Dominion principal Nicole Boddy having her position closed by CTS last week, the school is looking for someone to take charge of the failing house team. A principal must be pro-active, organised, working with teachers, support staff and technical staff to ensure progression and improvement of students both onstage and off.

Principals regularly attend Principal team Meetings with staff, they meet with the full team where they share the views of the students as a group.

Principals must show enthusiasm for CTS, the productions and the policies of the School. A principal must be optimistic, open minded, good at planning, observational, caring and be inspired. The new principal will be awarded equalising points to bring the team up to the nearest hundred points to the third lowest team as an incentive to the role.

The new Dominion House Principal will be elected very shortly. Watch this space!

Future of The Voice Theatre Company (1 Mar 2012)

Talks are currently underway with the agenda being the future of The Voice Theatre Company.

The company dedicated to the intense training and nurturing of students interested in straight drama and drama performance, has just cleared copyright for the new production due to open in June 2012. Frankie and Johnny in the Clair de Lune, a two hander drama about to go into read through and first treatment status

However with straight drama being the underdog to musical theatre and dance at amateur status in Teesside, there are concerns by staff over finance and funding further work from this company.

Originally set up for the first 12 months as a free enterprise after Lawrie Love (owner and artistic director) had read The Boy Called It, he not only wanted to produce this as a stage play but so CTS could offer gritty and raw drama, while offering training to acting students. The company developed with strain as student numbers were low and casting productions proved difficult. Productions were at best, adapted for the amount of acting students present, which made the body of work for students and the repertoire of the company always appear slightly blurred with no real titles being produced. This also meant extra hard work for then artistic director Shabnam Darbar who had to cut productions together in order to produce work.

Romeo and Juliet was a particular success but relied heavily on the students of Conservatoire de Theatre to make this happen. Artistic director of the Voice company until 2009, Shabnam Darbar found it increasingly difficult to cast well known productions that would not only sell well, but be of interest to students and nurture their careers/training. Shabnam worked exceptionally hard to make the productions work in an adapted sense, hoping to not only keep the interest of students but also to offer exciting work to our audiences. Shabnam and Lawrie are the only people who know the struggles of producing work at the Voice Company and these struggles have gone on for many years, many years of hard work, planning, commitment, keeping morale up whilst maintaining the professionalism of a theatre company.

The Voice was due to close several times in history and was kept open for the sole benefit of the actors involved. The company for many years made little contribution to the business and at times was almost fully funded by Conservatoire productions. It is very important that CTS is a business, the individual companies must be able to survive on their own. Something the Voice found difficult.

The Voice Theatre Company in more recent years had small numbers and this makes choices very difficult for artistic directors, especially when classes and rehearsals are only once a week and are often floored with additional pressures of absences, holidays, lowering budgets based on lowering audience figures, rising production costs including electricity, gas, venue hire, timber, paint, furniture, lowering audience figures due to smaller casts and studio time becoming increasingly more expensive.

January 2011 saw the introduction of a repertoire change, whereby several productions would be working at any one time. Hoping to offer actors more range of characters, more audition exposure, covering more plays and authors. This almost became successful until a group of actors had to leave Voice just as Abigail's Party went into rehearsal, this made the planned productions impossible to continue with, forcing the Voice Company to focus on a two hander, which was most successful, albeit veering of course slightly. The Voice has always been a small and close group and actors having to leave the company created a detrimental affect on production planning, work, rehearsal and producing.

Whilst Misery's Child was a success artistically, it was still only a two hander and cost almost 4 times as much as it recouped at the box office. The cost of the furniture alone in this production was a fraction under the final income. The final production, Bouncers Remix was one of the most financially viable plays produced and this is partly because of it's fame, it's author, simplicity and the option of offering a black box production against a large scale drama every other production (part of the new repertoire policy).

After listening to student feedback in January 2012, and offering cheaper fee structures and reduced hours the Voice began discussing the new production, hoping that over the course of this, new students might evolve. Staff are currently discussing whether to fund the new production or close the group much to the dismay of the current students.

One thing is quite clear and this is that no decision will be made solely for the benefit of students. In the past, the company was bailed out several times for the sole benefit of the student group and their training. A decision about the future of the Voice will be based purely on business and budgeting and at the present time, this does not look promising. A decision will be announced shortly.

Voice has produced some exciting work and in doing so has catapulted and fast-tracked the training of a core group of student actors, young actors who were completely novice at the time, enthusiastic and passionate but inexperienced and untrained. These students have grown with the Voice and have developed with Shabnam Darbar and Lawrie Love in recent years. We are proud of the what the Voice has achieved but a decision about its continuation and the funding of such work must be made shortly.

Voice set out what it had planned to do, to train and to produce, not only shows but talent! It was never going to be easy but it was never meant to be so difficult. We are sure students former and present would agree that the voice offered training of the very highest standards to them available locally, The Voice at CTS was unlike anything else on offer in Teesside and offered the best to our trainee actors, the very best!

Pre-Production & Performance Dates 2013 (29 Feb 2012)

Please find below the current planned dates for our upcoming productions. We have also included the pre-production period for each performance.

This period (which is usually 7 days) is an imperative part of the production and therefore we cannot authorise any absences. If a student wishes to be absent within pre-production, then they will not be permitted to take part in the production; this to ensure that the production is not impacted in any way. Please note that pre-production may be extended for various reasons, however, current planned absences (which have been authorised by the Box Office) will be taken into consideration and the authorisation of this absence will not change.

If you have any questions about the production dates or pre-production you must approach the Box Office urgently who will then provide assistance or a response to your questions. If they feel necessary then this may be escalated to the production Director.

(PRE-PRODUCTION IS 7 DAYS PRIOR TO THE SHOW DATES)

FEB HALF TERM SHOW
YOUNG SET SHOW
FEB 24TH 2PM
MAR 3RD 2PM

EASTER SHOW
CONSERVATOIRE SHOW

APR 14TH 5PM
APR 21ST 5PM

JUNE HALF TERM SHOW
YOUNG SET SHOW

JUN 9TH 2PM
JUN 16TH 2PM

SUMMER SHOW
CONSERVATOIRE SHOW

SEP 8TH 5PM
SEP 15TH 5PM

HALLOWEEN SHOW
YOUNG SET SHOW

OCT 30TH 7PM

CHRISTMAS 2013
CONSERVATOIRE SHOW

DEC 9TH 10AM & 2PM
DEC 10TH 10AM & 2PM
DEC 11TH 10AM & 2PM
DEC 12TH 10AM & 2PM
DEC 16TH 10AM & 2PM & 7PM
DEC 17TH 10AM & 2PM
DEC 18TH 10AM & 2PM & 7PM
DEC 19TH 7PM

Revue 2 - Further Casting Announced (19 Feb 2012)

Congratulations to the following students for being cast in the following roles...

Jack Bandeira - Warner
Luke Oldfield - Emmett
Carl Leonard - Prof. Callaghan / UPS guy and others

Tickets for this production go on sale 17th March 2012.

Click Here for more information about Revue 2.

Student Appraisals (7 Feb 2012)

2012 sees the beginning of the student appraisals. Parents and students are being asked to attend the theatre either at the start or end of a class to have a friendly and informal catch-up.

The aim of the appraisal is to run each parent/student through the work completed most recently, the meeting gives the student/parent a chance to hear professional feedback, as well as discuss the position of the student and to agree any strategy of further or additional training.

We want to ensure the student is coping with the training we offer and that both student and parents are happy with the services provided by the School. The meeting will also be a chance for the student/parent to ask any questions or concerns they may have.

Each meeting will be kept to a minimum time scale. Appraisals have been under way for the past two weeks and continue all year long for students who are part of the Advanced Young Set and Conservatoire de Theatre.

Revue 2 Act One Cast List (7 Feb 2012)

Auditions held in January for the Act One part of Revue 2 (Grease Section) are as follows...

SANDRA DEE - MOLLY GREIG
SANDRA DEE COVER 1 - UNDECIDED

DANNY ZUKO - CARL LEONARD
DANNY ZUKO COVER 1 - JACK BANDEIRA

RIZZO - OLIVIA CALVERT AND PORTIA CALVERT

KENICKIE - JACK BANDEIRA
KENICKIE COVER 1 - LUKE OLDFIELD

PATTY SIMCOX - REBECCA ROBINSON

SONNY - JASON MATTHEWS
OTHER T BIRDS - UNDECIDED

MARTY - MEGAN QUINN
JAN - TAMSYN WATSON SMITH / JESSICA PTOHOPOULOS (TBC)
FRENCHY - NATALIE ROBINSON
FRENCY COVER 1 - UNDECIDED

EUGENE - HARRY HORRIGAN
TEAN ANGEL - LUKE OLDFIELD
TEEN ANGEL COVER 1 - LIAM GOODMAN

The rest of the company will perform as members of the Grease ensemble.

Roles that are "TBC" will be announced in late February 2012. Click here to visit Revue 2.

Monthly Awards for January 2012 (7 Feb 2012)

Student of the Month Nominations

Megan Quinn
Jessica Ptohopoulos
Molly Greig
Olivia Calvert


The four students have been chosen by their principals last week for good behaviour, being inspirational to others, working hard and outstanding effort and contribution to CTS. The winner will be awarded a certificate and £10 gift voucher to a store of their choice at next weeks class as a token thank you from the staff.

These student have shown particular promise over the course of the last four weeks. Their work ethic and behaviour have been outstanding. Well done to you all but sadly there can be but one winner! Student of the Month will also be granted 2 specially priced seats for a show of their choice in 2012. (see individual productions for details)

Principal Team of the Month

Both Gershwin (Rebecca Robinson) and Prince Edward (Natalie Robinson) house teams have won a draw for January Team of the Month. Well done everyone involved and keep up the good work!

Sadly Dominion House (Nicole Boddy) is awarded January Losing Team of the Month! Better luck next time guys!

On The Floor by the Young Sets (7 Feb 2012)

This new production set against a graffitied dead end alleyway will be the first production to come out of the Young Sets for 2012.

The show will be filled with all of your favourite chart hits with choreography to dazzle and delight!

More information is to follow shortly. Visit On The Floor here.

The Young Set - March 2012 Production (26 Jan 2012)

Based on the absence forms that have been handed in, we are pleased to announce that all classes of the Young Sets well be taking to the stage in March 2012.

Their production will be a commercial, street, punk dance show.

We are looking at 2 performances on the 25th March 2012. With pre-production 7 days before for technicals and increased rehearsals. The show will have 5 dance tracks per company and information will be heading out of the office in the very near future.

We are also keen to explore new and old vocal talent amongst the two groups. Giving the students the chance to sing live on stage.

This production is 90% confirmed and advertising will start in the coming week.

Technical Difficulties with Online Schedule (26 Jan 2012)

Due to some minor technical difficulties earlier this week we made the decision to close down our online scheduling system.

We apologise for any inconvenience caused and hope that all students and parents received the update on our facebook pages.! The password has since been updated and letters will be sent out this weekend regarding the new information. The entire student page will be taken down for a period of time while our online security is reset. Please bear with us.

We are happy to announce that the online schedule will be up and running imminently.

Revue 2 Auditions (26 Jan 2012)

The first half of the auditions for Revue 2 have been completed. Casting updates will be provided in the coming weeks on the Revue 2 pages of this site. We are undergoing auditions for the second portion of the show on Feb 4th, 2012 between 1pm and 5pm.

Again audition slots must be booked in by the box office team on 01642 363334. These are open auditions and members of the public are welcome to audition.

Scholarships 2012 (26 Jan 2012)

We are enormously excited and proud to advertise our new scholarship facility.

We are aware that there are many talented young people in Teesside who have expressed an interest in training at CTS. The new scholarships are aimed at young people who have an "above average" talent level. The scholarship will take away the financial burden of school fees, allowing those who may not be able to furnish the school with the correct fees to train here.

The scholarships are in honour of Mr James Barnes, The CTS Committee and Mr George Oldfield.

A full description can be found on this site under scholarships.

Fairwell to George Oldfield (26 Jan 2012)

We are very sorry to announce that our friend and voluntary colleague of 5 years, George Oldfield has given 4 month notice before hanging up his work clothes for the very last time. A correspondence happened in mid January detailing his decision and reasons. His resignation was accepted and George will build his last production set this season.

George Oldfield is currently single handedly responsible for the construction of the sets in our theatre. George has not only built some stunning works of theatrical art, but has also maintained the theatre and made changes to it, making life easier and better for students and staff.

George has built the Event 2006 set consisting of sloping rooftops, he also co-built the Narnia 2006 set. His other work includes creating a floating Glinda bubble and moving Oz head for the 2009 production of the Wizard of Oz! Recent sets included Miser'y Child, Of Mice and Men and Moulin Rouge!

George has been a friendly face in the theatre since his arrival and we are sure he will be sorely missed amongst staff and students alike. We take this opportunity to thank George most sincerely for his massive contribution to the theatre. A scholarship in his name has been made available to future students (see scholarships). The latest set George will work on is an installation set featuring a bridge over 10ft high!

Studio Dance Parties (26 Jan 2012)

It is thrilling news that since the launch of our studio dance parties that we have had 5 bookings since December 2011 for January and February! With more to follow!

More information is available on this site (see Dance Parties)! Thank you to all of those who are supporting this new project at CTS.

The Voice Theatre Company (26 Jan 2012)

A new production is underway at Voice Theatre Company. A read-through has already begun and plans are underway to bring an hilarious social comedy to our audiences in May 2012.

A production was scheduled for February 2012 but due to unforeseen circumstances this production has been cancelled making way for our new production.

A new fee structure has been applied to Voice Theatre Company and we are encouraging new students to join this active performance group. The company performed three excellent dramas in 2011 and we have every intention of continuing our dramatic work into 2012.

The title of the production will be announced in the coming weeks.

New Enrolment and Application Forms (26 Jan 2012)

New students can now enjoy our new application forms which have been simplified and made easier to read.

The new applications will be rolled out as from February 2012 once final checks have been made. The new format is a much cleaner line, with larger spaces for student details, and a bigger font making the documents much easier to read. The new forms and contract have had a much needed update in that much of the out of date information has been removed and new policies have been included.

The new pack features two sections, one simply called "guidance" and the other "application". Both doing exactly what it says on the tin!

The new documentation will be neatly housed in a professional style card prospectus folder. The new updated contracts will be handed out to current students for signing, to ensure the entire school follow the new policies.

New Young Set Fee Structures for 2012 (26 Jan 2012)

We have tried very hard since 2006/07 to keep the fee prices of the various classes and companies the same. It is with regret that we have had very little option but to make a small increase in students fees (young sets).

We believe we offer a first rate service to all students at all classes and that our prices must reflect our work. The current set up is that every class pays the same monthly/4weekly fee regardless of the staggering extra classes we provide at production times. This system also means that no refunds are given on school closures, absences and vacations and such like.

We have no intention of changing this set up as it ensures a clean and simple 12 payments per year. This system reduces box office hours, staff workloads and the need for excess parental traffic.

Our last fee alterations for this class were in 2006/07. We would like to make it clear to new parents at CTS, that this is not a regular occurrence and we do not increase fees for the sake of it. We have kept our current fee the same for 5yrs!

There are times, in the weeks leading up to a production, when Young Sets additional classes are the equivalent of two months worth of classes. It must be stipulated that we have battled with this decision for the last 18 months but sadly feel we cannot continue any longer offering such a great service at the current fee structure.

We have decided that the Young Sets classes will be increased by an extra £1.25 per student per class. As usual this will cover, all extra classes when shows are approaching, technicals in the theatre and extra classes in holiday time. This fee also covers 6 weeks of student absences, vacations and school closures as always.

This new fee will be charged as from February 19th 2012. We welcome any direct thoughts you may have at the box office either in person or over the telephone. If there are persons who may struggle with the new fee structure we would like to hear from you.

There has been many parents telling us that we have been too cheap for too long! We hope this isn't placing too much of a burden on your finances and that you will of course continue to support us and attend, whilst we set a fee that is fair of the work we do and services provided.

NEW FEE STRUCTURES ARE AS FOLLOWED...

4 WEEKLY FEE - CORE AND BEGINNERS - £22.00 MONTHLY - CORE AND BEGINNERS - £23.83 4 WEEKLY - ADVANCED PP/PC - £25.00 MONTHLY - ADVANCED PP/PC - £27.08

Splitting of the Core Young Set (26 Jan 2012)

Thank you to everyone who sent in advice notes regarding the split of the Core Young Set.

A decision will be made shortly and as mentioned in our recent letter, we will endeavour to keep friendships that grow confidence; at the forefront of our minds. We are sure not everyone will be 100% happy but sadly, we cannot keep everyone smiling, much as we would like! It is an imperative must that this group are divided to ensure they have the correct level of attention from the staff and helpers in their classes.

This decision will not affect quality of work or opportunities at show time. If there any problems or you are unhappy with the final decision, please do let us know so we can see where we can offer help and support.

Password Change 2012 (8 Jan 2012)

The "student section" password on our website will change on Monday 9th January 2012. (please see your letter). If you were absent and did not receive a letter, please call the box office on 01642 363334 for the correct information.

It is necessary to alter the passwords from time to time or when their has been large changes within the company. We hope you find the new passwords amusing!

Principal Re Shuffle (8 Jan 2012)

We are delighted to announce that their has been a re shuffle within the principal teams and the new teams will be uploaded on the student section very soon!

Students from The Voice Theatre Company, Conservatoire De Theatre and Advanced Young Set will be informed of their new teams this weekend!

It is a very exciting time for the new principal groups as all groups start points from zero.

Congratulations Gershwin House (8 Jan 2012)

We are pleased to announce that Rebecca Robinson and her principal team Gershwin House for winning Principal House Team of 2011. Rebecca now becomes Chief Principal. Rebecca has shown strength and determination and has always been an inspiration to her team. She is not afraid to take leadership or direction and is a strong principal when it comes to keeping her team within the rules of CTS. She has also shown care and kindness to students who have perhaps struggled. She always nurtures her team and encourages them through each show.

She has worked tirelessly for her students and the school, and we wish her well in her new role as Chief Principal for 2012. A role that brings new responsibilities and demands that are more office based than the average principal.

New Gift Vouchers for Student of the Month (8 Jan 2012)

CTS will now be offering the student of the month a £10 gift voucher to a store of their choice. The new scheme is aimed at encouraging students to go above and beyond their capabilities each month. Good work, better effort, professionalism and excellence will all be taken into consideration when a monthly vote is cast by principals in week three of every month.

We want to show students that we value their efforts and we notice that they are working to the very best of their ability and are contributing to their own success, their own goals and for being a great team player, an inspiration and a contributor to our work and efforts.

The student of the month is no longer points based as it was before, although top point scorers will be recognised in the usual way.

Grease The Musical (8 Jan 2012)

Due to copyright restrictions, it is sad news that Grease The Musical is no longer available to Youth Theatres in the UK for the time being. However we are pleased to announce that we will be able to perform excerpts from the musical in a musical revue style show in April.

Other musicals will now be added to the mix. Choices on the other musicals have not yet been decided! Please bear with us as the production pages of our website are taken off and updated soon. The new production will be entitled Revue, which was also the title of a production of a similar nature some years ago. Auditions and information will be uploaded as soon as decisions have been agreed in class.

Advanced Young Set - 2012 Class Times (8 Jan 2012)

Advanced Young Set will now amalgamate with Conservatoire de Theatre for a class brief and physical warm up. The amalgamation will happen on the 15th January 2012.

Therefore the new times for Advanced Young Set will be 11am - 12.30pm each Sunday.

There will be no charge for the additional time spent in the theatre training. We hope the move will inspire confidence, nurture talent and create a healthy sense of competition within principal teams. The move will also ensure the students are given more opportunities to develop their performance skills, be inspired by the older students and observe and take on their work ethic.

The move will also ensure students have a better line of communication with the team and be aware of what is happening within the theatre more.

The bulk (one hour) of the class will still be with Alicia Iman in the studio as normal and we have no plans to change this. The schedule will show the new end times of the classes as from Monday 9th January 2012.

CTS Reflect on 2011 ( 30 Dec 2011)

As 2011 draws to a close the staff of CTS Lawrie Love & Alicia Iman send their usual 'End of Year' letter to all students.

This was given to all students in their last class, however, they're keen to share their thoughts with the CTS fans as well.

To view the CTS End of Year communication, click here!

Casting For Christmas Concert (Nov 25th 2011)

Auditions have now been completed and we are very pleased with the level of professionalism and talent shown by our students at yesterdays auditions.

The following auditions have been successful and will be appearing in the Christmas Concert.

Molly Greig - Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas
Macey Eddy - Deck the Rooftop
George Bailey - War is Over (possible duet)
Natalie Robinson - Santa Baby (as a trio)
Luke MacGregor - Let it Snow
Molly Greig - Perfect Year
Richard Little & Olivia Calvert - Fairy Tale of New York
Portia Calvert - Where are you Christmas?
Carl Leonard - Hallelujah
Jack Bandeira - It's the Most Wonderful Time of the Year

Other solo's for Nicole Boddy, Chelsea West and Carl Leonard are not yet confirmed.

These roles / solos / parts are subject to change.

Work and the staging/blocking of these pieces will begin this week (please keep an eye on the schedule as information will be released here first). Those who are missing from rehearsals or blocking sessions may be removed from the production.

We would like to thank everyone who has taken the time to audition and come to the theatre to present themselves. We hope it was a great learning curve and an enjoyable process. You can ask for feedback from the staff by asking at the box office for a feedback discussion.

We look forward to seeing what you can bring to the final performances! For even more information about the Christmas Concert click here!

SCROLL DOWN FOR MORE NEWS!!

New Lighting Technology for CTS (Nov 17th 2011)

In an attempt to upgrade our lighting technology over the next 12 month, we have begun purchasing new state of the art LED lighting technology to compliment the existing LED and moving head technology already in the theatre.

In a recent lighting splurge of close to £1000, 3 new LEDJ Stage Colour 24Tri stage lighting units will replace some of the generic lighting in the theatre. Two of the new units will be suspended on the lighting rig front of house, which lights the apron of the stage. The current 8 parcan lights will be taken down and the outcome should be a much brighter show with a more intense saturation in colours.

The remaining light will be suspended just behind the proscenium arch and will work with the bank of 9 LED lamps attached on the proscenium arch. This will provide more lighting for downstage and centrestage. The bank of two flood lights will be moved further upstage and this will continue until all lighting bars are complete with intelligent lighting technology, whilst the generic lamps will be placed in storage and only used for additional architectural/scenic lighting.

The new technology will give the creative team much more flexibility with lighting as well as provide many new colours and strobe effects. The general look and feel of shows will be brighter, more colourful and more intense.

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Understanding the Young Sets Role in the Christmas Concert (Nov 17th 2011)

Advanced Young Set

This group will perform in both performances of the concert! They will be performing dance numbers and theatrical pieces alongside Conservatoire de Theatre.

Core Young Set

The Core Young Set will be split into two groups, (Group A & Group B). The Core Young Set will be performing a traditional Nativity play. This will be broken into three or four sections and will be performed throughout the concert! Parts will be picked shortly based on students ability and capabilities. Those not in a main role will feature in the performance as ensemble and chorus.

Beginners Young Set

Similar to Core Young Set, this group will also be split into two groups (Group A & Group B). Beginners will be providing the carols that accompany the Nativity. They will also have small other performances throughout the concert (Frosty the Snowman and Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer).

Costumes, Scripts, Songs & Props

In the coming week, the production will be organised into a running order. This will then allow staff and the technical teams to know approximately how the show will work. (This is a process that happens every show) Once staff are happy with the running order and the look of the show they can then begin to release information to parents. Information will be dispatched in the form of a letter handed out to students in class. A copy of this letter will also be available on the student schedule under the name of your class!

Some of the information from this letter will also be posted on the Christmas Concert page of our site as well as facebook and twitter. (Information picked for the Christmas Concert page on our website is for marketing purposes only and is picked for the production page based on its public interest).

This letter will cover 90% of what is required from each student/parent with regards to costumes, scripts, lyrics, tracks, makeup and props! (It is important that all parents are furnished with the student contract to ensure a smooth rehearsal process). The end of year letter will also be posted out shortly and again copies of this can be found online!

New Students to Young Sets BEFORE November 15th 2011

If your child is new to CTS and is participating in their first performance here, then we would like you to know that we are here for you and any concern or queries you may have! It can be a nervy time going though your first show both as a parent and as a student. Please feel free to call us anytime with any questions you have regardless of how trivial they may seem.

We produce high a standard of training and performances for our students, and approaching your first show may seem daunting! We want to help make this process as smooth and as pleasant as possible. We can only help you if we know about your struggles, so please call as often as you wish! Simply leave your name and number and we will contact you when the office is next open! Our contact details can be found below.

New Students to Young Sets AFTER November 15th 2011

Unfortunately students after this date will not be able to perform in the Christmas Concert as the production is underway. However, classes will still have an element of dance to them and can be enjoyed as a standard Young Set class. Only a small portion of the class is dedicated to the Christmas Concert. We appreciate this may seem a little unfair, however it also seems unfair to expect new students to be thrown straight into a large scale production so soon.

Don't worry, the dance material worked on in class is part of the next production which will be performed early in 2012.

Getting Organised for the Concert

As always at this time of year, there is a lot more happening in the building on a weekly basis than normal! We also appreciate at this time of year there is alot more going at home!

Auditions, dance calls and vocal sessions will be happening in the studio surrounded by other classes the school runs. The entire public areas of the theatre are undergoing a makeover and on stage we have the floor being completely re-painted, a glorious nativity manger under construction as well as the main set design to be built.

The box office is dealing with tickets, queries, licensing, new applications, class planning and end of year finances, whilst the technical team get to grips with new lighting, programming the production sound, blocking in any moving scenery and organising props! Everyone requires more space, more time, more assistance and more patience!

The production itself is just under two hours long and features almost 105 performers. We ask that parents and students who are able to, to check the student schedule regularly and to keep abreast of changes.

We need good communication with parents and for parents to follow the student contract. We regularly update the pages on our website with as much of the latest information as possible. Facebook and twitter updates are also rolled out as information becomes available. Pages to check would include... Christmas Concert webpage, Student Online Schedule and the Discovery News Updates. Clicking on the classes on the online schedule will also reveal information as it becomes available.

We hope this update has helped you gain an understanding of the way in which the Christmas Concert will work and how things will be achieved.

Audition Date for Solos in Christmas Concert (Nov 17th 2011)

Thursday 24th November - CTS Studio - 5.30pm - 9.30pm

We are holding solo auditions in the CTS Studio on Thursday 24th November 2011 for those wanting to perform solos in the new production. This applies to Voice, Conservatoire and Advanced Young Set students only.

Time slots will be allocated in class this coming weekend for those wishing to audition, auditionees must provide backing tracks on memory stick or CD for the audition and must have committed the lyrics to memory!

We are looking for traditional tracks with a modern twist! Feel free to seek advice in class from the staff regarding your choices. Each soloist can have a total of 3 tracks to audition for in one audition slot! Singers can get together to perform duets and larger group performances. Having an audition does not guarantee you a role in the show.

Each soloist should allow 30 minutes for the audition. Earlier slots will be reserved for Advanced Young Set. Please book your audition slots in class at reception and not over the telephone. We look forward to exposing more vocal excellence from our team of very talented performers from across the company.

Auditions are formal but friendly, this assists students understand the etiquette and principles behind a professional audition process, yet isn't too daunting. Sadly parents are not allowed in the audition but can wait in the theatre. We wish everyone who auditions the very best of luck!

Carl Leonard offered solos in Christmas Concert (Nov 4th 2011)

Former student Carl Leonard has been offered two solo performances in this years Christmas Concert.

Carl who has performed in many Conservatoire de Theatre productions will make a return to the CTS stage this winter. The tracks won't be confirmed until Nov 2011 but we are positive his voice will bring much quality to the event.

http://www.ctsonline.co.uk/New%20Site/whatson.html Carl is also considering auditioning for lead roles in the 2012 productions.

Read more about the Christmas Concert here.

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Farewell Fracture (Oct 19th 2011)

On Tuesday 11th of October 2011, Cleveland Theatre School met with Fracture Theatre Company to discuss the future.

With a series of adverts appearing on Facebook from Fracture in recent weeks, it was agreed that the company was moving away from its original mission and was becoming too similar to CTS. As this created a confict of interest, it was decided by CTS, the popular youth theatre of 22 years, could no longer play host to Fracture if the company was to offer similar projects and classes.

Fracture felt in order to grow and expand that they must move away from their original goals/missions and offer different attractions. It was therefore agreed on Tuesday 18th October 2011 that Fracture would move out of the theatre and home of CTS. Fracture will have vacated the theatre in most part by Sunday 23rd October 2011.

"When Fracture arrived to us in 2010 they were offering something very different to our classes and projects, they were very interested and still are interested in performing externally at functions and events around the North East, but also offered a more experimental style of theatre. Fracture were keen to play around with the avant-garde and more progressive type of performance" explains Lawrie Love, Artistic Director of CTS.

"The two companies were very different and offered different styles of not only performance but also classes. With a sequence of recent adverts for classes almost identical to what we offer, it was felt that we could not support a company in our own venue who was offering the same. This is not what we signed up to do. Of course Fracture must grow and expand and this is important to them and we accept this, I have said from the beginning of our talks that this was not about the prevention of growth but about protection for something we have already in place and to a high standard.

We had no choice but to offer Fracture this unfortunate ultimatum which they accepted with professionalism and good grace. At CTS we have a winning formula and are very popular with parents and young people. It has taken many years to get our formula correct and gain the respect of over 80 parents of the Young Set. Parents know our productions and classes are of the highest standards whilst retaining fun and enjoyment. Our productions are widely anticipated and produced with a great deal of care for the welfare of the young pupils, at the same time they look breathtaking and exciting.

I know it has not been an easy decision for Matthew (artistic director of Fracture), however it is imperative that CTS protects its work, model and formula. We hope Fractures approach to these new classes is innovative and original and does not replicate the CTS blueprint and design, after-all when we started our Young Set in 2000, there was no class like it. We had to be creative and inventive, something we hope Fracture will be, as to diminish any similarities or equivalent.

We wish Matthew and the gang all the best for their new journey and we are positive they have exciting times ahead of them."

Production Dates and Pre-Production Dates for 2011 / 2012 (updated Oct 20th 2011)

Performances These dates have been supplied so students can ensure maximum attendance. Please see your contract regarding attendance and absences. Please note that Young Set dates will be added shortly.

Bouncers Remix 6th and 13th Nov 2011
Christmas Concert 11th December 2011
Body Building Performance 17th December 2011
Voice Production (Comedy) 19th and 26th February 2012
Grease The Musical 15th and 19th and 22nd of April 2012
Voice Production (Drama) 10th and 17th June 2012
Moulin Rouge 29th July and 2nd, 5th & 9th August 2012 (additional performances would be early Sept 2012) Little Shop of Horrors 18th and 22nd and 25th November 2012

Pre-Production No absences are permitted in these spaces if students wish to perform. Students who are regurly absent in times of pre-production or live performances will be subject to termination of place. Please note that Young Set dates will be added shortly.

5th December - 21st December 2011 (all companies)
7th April - 22nd April 2012 (Grease company)
21st July - 5th August 2012 (Moulin Rouge Company)
1st December - 16th December (Little Shop of Horrors Company)

Dates and performance titles are subject to change. Students must keep themselves furnished with updates.

Stage now Empty (Oct 19th 2011)

After a successful health and safety inspection last week, the stage has now been emptied of the previous production Event 2011 and is in the process of being re-set for the new production Bouncers Remix. After careful planning and deliberation over the past week, the decision was made to re-design the layout of the set for lighting purposes for the new show. The production will still be staged in a black box setting, but extra space will be created for set construction of the student evaluation projects currently being held in the theatre.

The new layout will also allow more playing space for the actors.

The floor will be re-painted next week and major work can begin on the overall presentation of the show the week after.

Copyright Granted for Bouncers Remix (Oct 19th 2011)

The official performance rights were granted to CTS this week to perform John Godber's Bouncers Remix. The rights, held by Josef Weinberger Ltd, were authorised to CTS for the two performances to be held in November 2011.

Paintwork (Oct 19th 2011)

Work has began on sprucing the theatre up. The walls in the building are having a fresh lick of white paint to keep the building looking clean and attractive. The venue normally has a repaint every year however due to lots of traffic in 2010 this was not possible.

The floors in the corridors and scene dock will also be re-painted. The doors will also be re-glossed and given a fresh new look! Work has already begun in the studio and work will continue into November until complete. There should be no disruptions to classes or activities!

Bouncers Teaser Trailer Released

The trailer for our new production Bouncers by John Godber
has been filmed and edited by students at The Voice Theatre Company.


Health and Safety Audit

With improvements and re-development an active part of CTS we are very much looking forward to our biennial health and safety audit by Stockton Borough Council.

CTS has always spent time and money in re-developing the theatre to make it easier for those who work in the building and make it a more pleasant environment for training. With our substage area having been redesigned and our workshop space having an overhaul, we will be only too excited to show the governing bodies our new spaces, which had been deemed more than acceptable in previous inspections!

Having an already excellent working relationship with the inspectors, and health and safety being a priority with all work carried out in the venue, we are very much looking forward to receiving another clean bill of health for 2012 - 2014.

Other inspections carried out at CTS also include LOLER, CRB, PAT TESTING, FIRE SAFETY & FIRST AID.

West End Visits CTS

Over the summer we have had numerous visits from former students currently in major theatre training institutions including Sarah Atkinson (Italia Conti Academy) and Clare Pugh (Millennium Performing Arts) who have given dance workshops or question and answer sessions to Conservatoire de Theatre.

But we were particularly thrilled when former CTS'er Stevie Hutchinson arrived to give us an insight into his work on Billy Elliott The Musical in the West End and the challenges and rewards he has faced since leaving Arts Educational in Chiswick.

Stevie is coming to the end of his contract on Billy Elliot and has been offered a role in Cameron Mackintoshs' latest tour Oliver! The Musical. He has also worked in Hairspray, High School Musical and Jesus Christ Superstar in the West End.

It was also a pleasure to welcome his partner Scarlette Douglas who is also actively involved in the industry and can be seen in the new ITV2 programme Models, Misfits and Mayhem. Scarlette has also performed in FELA (National Theatre London), Thriller Live (Singapore) and Whistle Down the Wind (London).

Students were able to ask a series of questions they felt beneficial to their education however sadly we ran out of time for a dance workshop with Stevie and vocal workshop from Scarlette. Something we look forward to at their next visit.

CTS Photography and Flickr!

Over the course of the last weekend the school concluded the photo-call for Event 2011. During the run-through of the final production a series of images were taken onstage as action happened in the production. However a series of special images were required for our new website! Many images will be available to purchase by students/parents if desired however it must be pointed out that the images taken are for this website and not as mementos!

Images were taken of all available performers (mostly head shots and close ups) as well as some rehearsal images from Bouncers.

A mass back catalogue of all imagery held by CTS is in the process of being organised into albums, which can be flicked through on our new flickr pages (available by November 2011). All images are for sale and prices can be sought by calling the box office on 01642 363334.

It must be made clear that some images are for marketing purposes only and may not show each performer in action against the set of the production. We look forward to sharing all imagery from CTS with our fans and colleagues in the coming weeks!

New Website 2011

We are thrilled to share with you the new CTS website. Whilst students have been relaxing and enjoying time off after a busy summer season, Lawrie Love and Richard Atkinson have been busy creating and designing the new site.

The new site is hoped to be easier to use for the audiences and students whilst also being simpler to amend and update for the staff. The new site is to be launched in early Oct 2011.

Students on Vacation

All students involved in the previous production Event 2011, are currently enjoying some much needed time off!

Students who worked tirelessly in the run up to the production have enjoyed one day a week performances on Sundays for two weeks, with no classes on during this time! Students at The Voice Theatre Company and Conservatoire de Theatre were also given an extra weekend vacation as a thank you for their hard work during technicals!

Classes resume fully on the 8th of October, when students will begin their performance evaluation projects and receive their appraisals.

Student Evaluations and Appraisals 2011

As from autumn 2011 Conservartoire students will be presenting a series of private performances for the staff enabling the staff to do a detailed appraisal. This allows students and parents to see development as well as allow staff and students to decide on a course of action for increased development.

The students will come together in groups to present performance material whilst taking different creative roles. Students will be given one month to plan, present and create their performance pieces.

Props Central Bank Complete

During the strike of MIserys Child, students at Conservatoire de Theatre began an overhaul on the props department!

All props at CTS are housed in the upper dock space of the theatre. Originally starting off with a series of shelves across one wall, the props department catered for the needs of all the productions, however over time the props department has grown and was in bad need of being re-positioned and re-organised.

A team of students spent two weeks clearing out the old department and sifting through hundreds of props. The new department has now taken over two full walls in the upper dock and there is space for every prop the theatre has in storage so far plus space for future props. The props central bank also houses the furniture department which is also growing steadily.

Students can now have much easier access to props and find items much quicker.

New T shirts 2012

The new 2012 CTS T Shirts and Sweatshirts will be available from November 2011.

The design will be our simple yet stylish logo. Orders can be placed in November. All students will be expected to wear the new uniform as from January 2012.

Leaflet Drop

A new a5 leaflet will be printed in the coming weeks. We hope to target some areas in the Teesside area. The leaflets will promote the school and encourage new students to join us.

Over 4000 homes in areas such as Ingleby Barwick, Yarm, Coulby Newham, Wolviston, Norton and Stockton will get one.

Students are not expected to deliver the leaflets but can help the staff team do so if they live in the areas. The leaflet drop will happen in October 2011.

Looking For Volunteers

CTS is looking for two or three volunteers who can spare a few hours per week to help George Oldfield in our workshop. Whilst George is happy to do the bulk of the work, it would be nice for him to have a small amount of help and someone to share the workload!

Skills required include a basic talent for DIY. Jobs include creating large scale sets using canvas, hardboard, timber, ply and polystyrene. Other duties include creating special props required for the productions and a small amount of painting and school maintenance.

If you are interested in helping us out then get in touch on 01642 363334.

Stage Talk TV

Special thanks to our friends at StageTalk TV for giving us the chance to promote CTS on their SKY Television Channel.

We had a very fun day in making the short video and was thrilled with the final result. This video is playing throughout our website and you can visit StageTalk TV here.

Grease The Musical

CTS will stage a full production of Grease The Musical in Spring 2012. Read more...

The Phenomenon Returns in 2012!

MOULIN ROUGE

After the celebrated smash hit production of Moulin Rouge in 2010. We are thrilled to announce that we will bring this epic and much loved production back to the CTS stage in early August 2012. Read more...

Little Shop of Horrors

Conservatoire de Theatre will present this much loved comedy rock musical in 2012. Read more...