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Sweet Charity

Sweet Charity the musical

Have you ever known a girl who wanted something so badly, that she tried too hard to get it? The Sainsbury Singers performed Sweet Charity at The Hexagon Theatre, Reading on 13-16 May 2015. Charity sang, danced, laughed and cried her way through her failed romances against a background of familar big musical numbers – Big Spender, If My Friends Could See Me Now, Too Many Tomorrows, There’s Gotta Be Something Better Than This, I’m a Brass Band, Baby, Dream Your Dream and The Rhythm of Life.

Sweet Charity the musicalMusic is by Cy Coleman, lyrics by Dorothy Fields and book by Neil Simon. The Sainsbury Singers produced Sweet Charity under licence from MusicScope.

Sweet Charity was produced and directed by Wendy Carne with musical direction by Trevor Defferd, choreography by Denise Schult and lighting design by Kim Hollamby.

The Hexagon’s large stage was employed to full effect following the recent Sainsurys Singers formula of black box theatre, but on this occasion with a few significant stage trucks and props to help it along. A further twist was presented at the interval when Charity and a hyper-ventilating Oscar stayed on stage, stuck in the elevator.

Lucy Hutson’s performance as Charity drew much adminiration and the well deserved award of The Sainsbury Singers’ Joy Day cup.

Read our full NODA report of Sweet Charity here.

What the audience said

It was the best Sainsbury Singers show I have seen…hats off to Lucy Hutson (Charity) who had so much energy and was on stage an unbelievable amount of time.

The show was brilliant; it was very funny and Lucy (Charity) and Gareth (Oscar) were amazing and my my mum also loved Marek (Daddy).

You bloody rocked it tonight Gary! (Oscar) Well done to you all that was brilliant xxx

I went to bed last night with ‘If my friends could see me’ in my head and woke up this morning with ‘Rhythm of life’, great show by all involved.

Well done to all of you for the hard work that I know that you all put into making it happen. It is a brilliant show with great songs and lots of laughs.

Good first night, congratulations. enjoy your run this week.

Wow, what a TERRIFIC show – the best amateur show I’ve seen in a long time. It’s also a very long time since I have been so impressed by a performance such as Lucy’s – absolutely stupendous. All of the other principals were terrific, too. Gary, you went to pieces very convincingly. Rob, I see you in a whole new light! Of the musical numbers I particularly liked Big Spender (very seductive, not just belted out) and Baby, Dream Your Dream (very wistful) but, really, they were all great. Nice to see the stalls looking full of an appreciative audience.

Brilliant, just brilliant!! Lucy and Gareth were fantastic and the entire cast were fabulous from beginning to end. Very proud to call myself a Sainsbury Singer. I can’t wait to be back on stage with such a brilliantly talented group of people.

Definitely the most fun show Sainsbury singers have done. I was laughing the whole way! I thoroughly enjoyed it. Lucy you did incredibly well and had lots of energy for the entire show! What a run! Gareth you did incredibly well too, the play you both had was very convincing.

Congratulations to everyone involved with Sweet Charity, from the cast to the orchestra and behind the scenes. My family and I thoroughly enjoyed your performance last night, thank you for entertaining us. The little touches here and there from the cameos and chorus were great and the principles were all fantastic. Lucy, in such a demanding role, you danced your way around the stage with so much energy it was a real pleasure to watch.

Wonderful show, really enjoyed it and surprised how many songs we knew from it – Charity and Oscar were great, Nickie and Helene’s duet was lovely and loved the dancing statue and the Rhythm of Life scene.

I just wanted to say what a fantastic show last night, it was put together brilliantly and so funny. You also did a grand job with the choreography Denise – loved what you all did with hey big spender. Congratulations to all, it was wonderful


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  • Charity Hope Valentine Lucy Hutson
  • Nickie Louise Quelch
  • Helene Sara El-Hanfy
  • Hostesses Kazia Grant, Amy Hale, Catherine Hannan, Emily Hiscock, Tanya Houghton, Denise Schult, Katie Wise
  • Herman Brian Bretney
  • Ursula March Emma Reeves
  • Vittorio Vidal Rob Latimer
  • Oscar Lindquist Gareth Wells
  • Daddy Brubeck Marek Rakowski
  • Brubeck’s Assistants Chris Thomas, Helen Thomas, Jessamy Vincent
  • Rosie Freya Wilson

Citizens of New York

Brian Bretney, Peter Cox, Kazia Grant, Amy Hale, Catherine Hannan, Emily Hiscock, Tanya Houghton, Chris Howard, Pete Howe, Valda Hull, Rob Latimer, Marek Rakowski, Emma Reeves, Denise Schult, Laura Schult, Michael Schult, Chris Thomas, Helen Thomas, Jessamy Vincent, Gareth Wells, Freya Wilson, Katie Wise, Gordon Wyard

Additional characters

  • Panhandlers Freya Wilson, Amy Hale, Jessamy Vincent
  • Pompeii Club Doorman Gordon Wyard
  • Pompeii Club Waiter Chris Howard
  • Vidal’s man servant Peter Cox
  • 92nd Street Y Receptionist Helen Thomas
  • First woman visitor Jessamy Vincent
  • Second woman visitor Valda Hull
  • Barney Gordon Wyard
  • Pompeii Club Dancers Freya Wilson, Kazia Grant, Katie Wise, Laura Schult
  • Marvin Michael Schult

The Sweet Charity Band

  • Leader Alex Postlethwaite
  • Violin Steph Cole
  • Cello Jo Coote
  • Reeds Sonia Perez Baeza, Miranda Gunn, Nicola Fairbairn, Jo Paterson-Neild
  • Trumpets Mark Cox, David Gray
  • Trombone Gen Curd
  • Guitar Dave Yates
  • Bass Jim Pullen
  • Keyboard Jevan Johnson Booth
  • Percussion Martin Proctor
  • Producer Wendy Carne
  • Choreographer Denise Schult
  • Musical Director Trevor Defferd
  • Production Coordinators Stephen Cox and Katie Wise
  • Lighting Designer Kim Hollamby
  • Sound John Ollerenshaw, Sally Ollerenshaw
  • Lighting programming and operation Adrian Croton
  • Followspots Stuart Brookfield, Louis Martin
  • Stage Manager John Simmonds
  • Deputy Stage Manager Becca Simons
  • Assistant Stage Manager Nick Humby
  • Stage Crew Joe Daniels
  • Lighting and Sound Hire Dinrino Theatre Services
  • Additional Lighting Equipment Kim Hollamby
  • Props and Set Chris Dinsey, James Humby, Kazia Grant, Rhonda Grant
  • Wardrobe Designer Amanda Bretney
  • Wardrobe Supervisor Emma Reeves
  • Makeup Design Kerry Thomas
  • Makeup Team Jessamy Vincent, Olivia Bretney
  • Hair and Wigs Catherine Hannan and Valda Hull
  • Prompt Anne Lowder
  • Displays Marketing Team and Emma Reeves
  • Website Kim Hollamby
  • Marketing Team Sara El-Hanfy, Kazia Grant, Louise Quelch, Denise Schult
  • Programme and Handbill Design Jessamy Vincent
  • Publishing Manager Jessamy Vincent
  • Photography Ray Wilmott 
  • Fundraising Team Rob Latimer, Michael Schult, Kerry Thomas
  • Social Team Stephen Cox, Catherine Hannan, Chris Reeves, Emma Reeves
  • Ticket Officer Anne Jones
  • Front of House Manager John Jones

Society Front of House Team

Brian Bennett, Chris Reeves, David Schult, Hannah Rakowska, Laurent Petithuguenin, Lindsay Simmonds, Lynne Furnell, Matt Smith, Olivia Bretney, Pat Long, Rob Furnell, Sam Blake, Susan Wyard, Viv Cox