Newsletter, August 2013

Our main production this year is just a month away.  Rehearsals are in full swing, fabulous costumes are being created, and we are looking forward to entertaining the public of Auckland once again. 


This gem of theatre is one of Oscar Wilde’s most enduringly popular plays.  We know that all our members will enjoy this outstanding entertainment with its witty dialogue.  The play is a glorious comedy of mistaken identity, which ridicules codes of propriety and etiquette. 

 A fantastic cast has been assembled and is working hard under the skillful direction of Richard Purro.  The characters and actors playing them are:

                                    Jack Worthing                             Chris Holdaway
                                    Algernon Moncrieff                    Steven Oates
                                    Canon Chasuble, DD                 Anthony Carroll
                                    Merriman (butler)                       Rob Turvey
                                    Lane (manservant)                     Neil Lobb
                                    Lady Bracknell                            Lynn Webster
                                    Hon Gwendolen Fairfax             Celeste Oram
                                    Cecily Cardew                             Rebecca Parr
                                    Miss Prism (governess)              Kerry Thornton

 Our season is  11 September to 21 September at the Theatre Pitt.  See the performance details on the enclosed leaflets.  As always, we rely on our members to help us with publicity and of course to come along yourselves!  Some discount specials have been introduced for the first time this year.  Paid-up members will find their member’s voucher enclosed with this newsletter.  If you think a voucher should be enclosed but has not been, please contact our Treasurer, Neil Lobb (phone 373 2869 daytime) to check your subscription status.


So says our chairperson, Marion Hines, who for many years has managed the Pilgrim wardrobe housed at Pitt Street Methodist Church.  This year, in presenting The Importance of Being Earnest,  we bring you a treat with the stunning costumes of 1890s London.   We are very fortunate that costumes will be designed and made by Carole Evans, who won the ACTT award for best costumes for our play Glorious last year.  See picture.  Carole dresses Celeste Oram. 


Our AGM was held on 17 June 2013.  Subscribing members will be provided with a copy of the Chairman’s annual report and the financial statements. 

 Office holders and committee for the coming year are as follows:

Marion Hines, Chair;  Mary Boyd, Deputy Chair;  Glenda Matchett, Secretary;  Neil Lobb, Treasurer; Committee members:  John Bembo,  Kathy Lobb,  Kerry Thornton,  Tara Solomon and David Hines.

Subscriptions will stay the same as last year.

We are very pleased to advise that Neil Lobb was appointed as a Life Member of Pilgrim, joining the small group of long-time volunteers who hold this office.


New business discussed at the AGM included Pilgrim’s direction for the future. 

Factors considered were the increasing number of theatre companies, both professional and amateur, operating in Auckland now; a very different scene from when we started 36 years ago.  Also the diminishing pool of technical expertise available to volunteer for amateur groups.  And in addition, our inability to source good script material that supports our ethos and differentiates us from other theatre companies.  Finally, because of serious competition with other entertainment, it has become harder and harder to attract audiences and reach a break-even point on productions.  

We will keep you posted on our continuing conversation on this theme and would be interested in your thoughts on the value of Pilgrim continuing.  We encourage all our members to have their say on this strategic issue.  Please email your comments to


Regrettably we were unable to cast our touring play this year and so have deferred any tour for now. 


Dolphin Theatre, Onehunga – On Golden Pond 27 July - 17 August

Stables Theatre, Ellerslie – One Act Play Festival – 22-31 August

Company Theatre, North Shore – Its Just Sex – 17- 31 August

Centennial Theatre, Auckland Boys Grammar – Gang Show 2013 --  28 August - 7 September

Auckland Music Theatre, Western Springs – Privates on Parade – 19 October


It is better in prayer to have a heart without words than words without a heart.”

― Mahatma Gandhi .