Spotlight

SPOTLIGHT

Dale Roger-Jones has been chiefly responsible for adding colourful dimensions to the stage since 2001. Her first meeting with MTC was through the Lioness Club of Malanda when they did the catering for the theatre restaurants. Ma Baker’s Tonic [1997] was a particularly fun time. There was no kitchen in the theatre and the Lionesses had tents set up in the park across the road. As luck would have it, rain was teeming down during the show so that the caterers were walking through waterfalls to deliver food to patrons in the theatre.

Having a family background in theatre, Dale eventually had a go onstage in the chorus for Robin the Hood [2001]. Someone was needed to paint the backdrops. Never being one to say no to a challenge and being familiar with an artist’s palette, Dale thought she might come to the rescue. She’s been building sets and painting backdrops and performing onstage ever since. “It’s is a very interesting job,” says Dale. “I learn something new every time because of the research that goes into planning a set. I look for pictures of buildings, furnishings, decor and costumes and I work closely with the Director to see what’s needed. The extra challenge is making something out of nothing. That requires some ingenuity. Anyone with an interest in history, interior design, creative building and playing with colour would find this a very rewarding job. No two productions are the same. ”

Judy Quilliam

Judy designs the programs and tickets, draws up the seating plans and presents them in an orderly package to the ticket outlets.
Judy first became involved in Malanda Theatre Company in 1997, aged 51. She’d been sitting in her “empty nest”, feeling sorry for herself when someone invited her to a Malanda Theatre Company get-together. She was offered a part in the next one-act play being planned and although terrified, decided to give it a go. The rest is history.
Judy has been in 28 productions in that 14 year period. Her beautiful singing voice and her uncanny sense of timing in comedy are not easily overlooked. Judy’s comments on her association with MTC: “I have loved being part of the MTC family and feel privileged to have played some really wonderful roles on stage.” Some of her favourites are: playing Joyce in “Last Tango in Tarzali” (2001); singing Aeroplane Jelly dressed in a cardboard aeroplane in 2002’s “Over the Top”; being Rosa the gypsy in the melodrama “The Red Barn” (2003) and taking part in all the wonderful productions since then. Judy enjoys the challenge, fun and companionship of being involved with the theatre group and wants everyone to know that it’s never too late to start doing something that sparks your interest.

Lioni as “The ghost of Christmas past” – 2015

My name is Lioni Wilkinson and I have been a part of the Malanda Theatre company since I was 13. I was cast as the Queen in the play “Wisdom for Same” and ever since I have been in love with the theatre. I have been in many other performances such as “Gallipoli – the Musical” and “Bilthe Spirit” but my favourite by far was “A Christmas Carol” where I got to play the ghost of the Christmas past. Now I’m about to begin my studies at a university to study a Bachelor of Film and Tv majoring in acting.

Mervena in Sweeny Todd

Mervena joined MTC in 1998. Looking for something different to do, she went to see “Ma Baker’s Tonic” and was instantly hooked. Mervena helped with costumes and props and various other roles backstage as well as trying her hand under the lights. She’s been onstage in over twelve shows – some of them award winners (“The Fat Lady Sings in Yungaburra”) – and has enjoyed every minute of it. How did she go from being a novice to onstage? “The friendship and camaraderie helped me with my confidence and made me feel I was part of one big, happy family.” Her talents onstage as a comic haven’t gone unnoticed and nor has her ability to stand still as a statue for long minutes at a time as a gorgeous looking washerwoman!

Mervena fell into organizing the curtains in 2002 and is now referred to as the Curtain Lady. “I enjoy the challenge of each production. I have to make exits and entrances in existing drapes or make new ones. The biggest challenge so far has been “Habeas Corpus”. There’s always someone willing to lend a hand, like Lorraine Gatti and Barbara Sager, always there when needed. My life in the theatre with MTC has been a very rewarding, fulfilling one and hopefully will keep me busy for a long time to come.”

Samantha has been a part of the MTC for many years. She was in the orchestra for Pirates of Penzance, Razzamatazz. Was onstage for The Pacific. And 2 years ago she helped choreography The Twits and then last year the MYT, Peter Pan. This year, Sam is choreographing several musical numbers. Sam has done dancing in the past, and more recently Latin dancing. She just loves to help out and teach the kids dancing, and finds it’s really enjoyable and rewarding. Sam can’t wait for the next production.