A music event in a north Norfolk stately home, raising funds for Sheringham Little Theatre, will be one of the first live events to return to the county.
The theatre cannot yet host full-scale events in its auditorium, but as lockdown eases it is promoting a pioneering outdoor performance mixing music, words and poetry in the walled garden at Mannington Hall on Saturday, August 22.
The world-renowned London Mozart Players will play classical music inspired by the experiences and emotions of four young performers during lockdown – ranging from family and separation to countryside and reflection – as well as positive lockdown stories submitted by the public.
One of the young actors, Jodie Weller, from North Walsham, said: “This will be an amazing experience – particularly being one of the first live performances in north Norfolk after a period which has seen, and continues to see, artistic venues and professionals struggling.
“It is wonderful to be raising money for the Little Theatre, which has been a big part of our lives, and to be bringing a live audience some joy.”
She will be joined by Tilda Fassih, from Sheringham; Katie Thompson, from Knapton; and Charlie Randall, from Aylsham, who are all in their 20s and will be curating and compering the community focused event.
During lockdown they have also been entertaining residents of local care homes with online singalongs – and on the morning of the concert will perform live outside two of the homes, with members of the London Mozart Players.
Theatre director Debbie Thompson said the event came about through Orchestras Live seeking a community-focused event for the London Mozart Players in north Norfolk, and the Little Theatre’s need for an outdoor fundraiser while the auditorium remained closed for live performances.
People buying tickets will be supporting the Little Theatre and freelance artists as they recover from the financial challenges of the covid-19 crisis. They will also get the chance to choose the event encore – after viewing two potential pieces via an online link.
Due to social distancing guidelines, there will be a limited numbers of tickets available for the 6pm-7.15pm show, which will also be recorded and available online for those who cannot attend.
Areas will be allocated for groups of up to six people. Visitors are asked to bring a travel rug, fold-up seats, and umbrellas in case of rain. There will be no interval.
Tickets are £12 for the live concert, and £6 for the recorded version. Afternoon tea boxes for two, with sandwiches, savouries, scones and cakes, costing £10 can also be ordered in advance. Audience members are welcome to arrive from 4.30pm to enjoy their food in the gardens before settling down for the performance.
If government guidelines change, preventing a live show, the concert will go ahead and be recorded. A 50pc refund would be available on tickets purchased for the live event on the basis that everyone would be able to watch the “virtual” version to support those involved.
For tickets, vistwww.sheringhamlittletheatre.com