Dear Friends and Members,

Season’s Greetings!  Now we have reached the shortest days, we can optimistically look forward to lighter evenings and warmer days.

I have been reflecting on the past twelve months of the Gage, and am very pleased with our achievements.  Our Spring production was Agatha Crusty and the Village Hall Murders, by Derek Webb, directed by Lesley Crowther-Smith.This comedy ‘whodunnit’ kept the everyone guessing until the end and was much enjoyed by both the audience and the cast.  In May the Gage ran a bottle tombola stall at the Walton May Pageant, which raised some very much appreciated funds for us.

We always have a rehearsed play reading in September when we present two short plays.  This year we had two very contrasting pieces – Separate Tables (Table No 2) by Terence Rattigan, directed by Chris Slater; and Evolution, written and directed by Pip Rolls.  The first was a 1950s light drama and the second was a quirky look at how we adapted from ancient times until the present. 

At last our Winter play in November made its debut!  Molly’s Calling, written and directed by Pip Rolls, had been intended to be performed in 2020, but the Covid pandemic and lockdown/s prevented it from going ahead.  For various reasons we waited until this time, and it was a huge success – the second evening performance needed more seating to accommodate the audience queueing at the door for this world premiere!  Everyone loved the unusual theme of the elderly scamming the rich to help the poor!

By popular request we are reinstating our Poetry and Prose Evenings held via Zoom – Wednesday, 10th January at 8pm will be the first.  These evenings were intended to hold the interest and enthusiasm of Gage members and friends during lockdown/s, and they proved a real success, giving us the opportunity to read old favourite poems, snippets from plays or a passage from a book that people had enjoyed.  The variety was amazing and so was the laughter at silly limericks.  If you would like to join in on 10th January, to read or just to listen, please contact us at for the link to join our Zoom get-together.

The Gage is still looking for an administrative secretary, in the first instance to take and type up the minutes of our committee meetings, then circulate them by email, with other more varied things to do as well if you like being involved.  We are a friendly, supportive group who will make you very welcome – theatrical knowledge is not needed, and help will be given to guide you.  We’d love to hear from anyone who thinks they might be interested, so do please contact us on

Our Spring production next year, The Nightingales by Peter Quilter, will be directed by Chris Slater , performing on 25th, 26th and 27th April 2024.  Read-throughs will be held at Chris’s home in Bookham at 8pm on Thursday, 11th, Monday, 15th and Wednesday, 17th January 2024, for a cast of three ladies and two gents.  This laugh-out-loud comedy presents two generations of the Nightingales, a performing family who appear to have more drama at home than during any show!  If you’d like to attend one or more of the read-throughs please contact for Chris’s address, phone number and email address.

We are hoping to hold a late ‘Twelfth Night’ meal for a social get-together – it will be a lunch, possibly on Saturday, 3rd February (a Leap Year month next year).  We’ll confirm date and venue as soon as possible.

Our regular September rehearsed readings event, starting with your own picnic supper and drinks at 7pm, is scheduled for Saturday, 14th September, curtain-up at 8pm.  Pip has offered another of his Snapshots of History, which we are delighted to accept, and are looking out for another short to precede or follow it.  Do you have a favourite one-act or short play to suggest, perhaps one that you would like to direct yourself?  A rehearsed reading is the perfect opportunity to think about having a go at directing, without the extras involved in a main production.   Please contact if you have any suggested plays to offer and/or would like to try out at directing.

Diary dates

Poetry and Prose event, 8pm via Zoom on Wednesday, 10th January 2024.

Read-throughs for the Spring play at 8pm on Thursday, 11th, Monday, 15th and Wednesday, 17th January 2024, in Bookham. 

Spring production, The Nightingales by Peter Quilter on 25th, 26th and 27th April 2024.

Rehearsed play readings with supper on Saturday, 14th September 2024

And, looking well ahead, our Winter production on 28th, 29th and 30th November 2024. 

As I am standing down as chairman, I would like to introduce Bernie Kemble to succeed me.  She is a returning Gage member with much theatrical experience and both I and the Gage committee welcome her for what promises to be an exciting first year in her new role

I wish you all a very Merry Christmas, and a peaceful, healthy New Year.


Gay Weeden, Chairman

Gage Players Committee

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