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Merry Wives set to round off Norwich theatre's group's season

Rachel Sizer as Anne Page, Anne Giles as Mistress Brewer of the Garter, Claire Cranston as Serving Maid, Terence Dabbs as Falstaff, Christine York as Mistress Ford, Wendy Brighton as Serving Maid.

Rachel Sizer as Anne Page, Anne Giles as Mistress Brewer of the Garter, Claire Cranston as Serving Maid, Terence Dabbs as Falstaff, Christine York as Mistress Ford, Wendy Brighton as Serving Maid.

Submitted - July 2011

Final rehearsals are under way at Norwich's Sewell Barn Theatre for its latest production.

The Merry Wives of Windsor, one of Shakespeare’s most popular and enduring comedies, is the next production heading for the stage at the Constitution Hill theatre.

The farcical tale centres around Sir John Falstaff and his efforts to woo married women for their husbands’ money.

Director Carole Lovett said: “Rehearsing this play has been a privilege and a joy.

“It’s an exciting mix of actors, young and old, veterans and beginners, Sewell Barn stalwarts and complete newcomers, and it’s given the production an astonishing energy and versatility.”

The production features period costumes and along the way includes fairies, vengeful women and star-crossed lovers.

Terence Dabbs plays Sir John Falstaff, with Cassie Tillett as Mistress Page and Christine York as Mistress Ford. Carole continued: “The dedication of each one of the actors and the care and attention to detail that they have all shown have made my job as their director immensely rewarding.

“Plus, despite the play being 400 years old, it has a relevance and a freshness that has never failed to strike a chord with its audience.”

The production is the last in the theatre’s 2010-11 season, meaning it is the last under the current artistic director Clare Howard.

The next season starts in October under the artistic direction of Michelle Montague and Robert Little, with a production of The Long and the Short and the Tall by Willis Hall, directed by Michelle Montague.

The theatre, which is in the grounds of Sewell Park College – formerly Blyth-Jex School – seats up to 100 people and has staged over 200 productions since it opened in 1980.

The Merry Wives of Windsor is being performed from July 14-16 and 20-23. Ticket information is available at www.sewellbarn.org or by calling 01603 697248.

Is your local theatre group preparing a new production? Call Local Life editor David Freezer on 01603 772418 or email david.freezer@archant.co.uk

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