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Wishes and Dreams - A Producers Perspective

On Saturday 13th May, Standing In The Wings produced Wishes & Dreams - A Fundraising Performance for Melanoma UK at Sharnbrook Mill Theatre. 
But lets rewind to September 2022A Night At The Musicals was the inaugural concert for our company. At the concert, the team decided to do a spur of the moment’ collection for Melanoma UK due to the personal link one of the team had to the charity. 

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Not one to give myself an easy life, after a conversation with the team member in question, we decided to make Melanoma UK our company charity and with that in mind I set about planning how to do a bigger concert to raise money and awareness for them. Anyone who knows me will tell you that I don
t do things by half which is also a challenge to mewhy settle for mediocre when you can aspire to be spectacular?! 
In January 2023, I spoke to a local venue that Id had lots of involvement with over the past 25 plus years and they agreed that we could use the venue for the event on the date we wanted. Tick box one complete.
Next stop, the cast! Ive been very lucky to pull lots of friends into the Standing In The Wings company and when the call went out to the team that we were producing a fundraising concert, we quickly had a top quality cast to perform in the show. I then invited Jamie Tyler to join us as host to which he agreed to immediately. Add into that CAREL Academy (a local dance school) who wanted to be involved and Weavers Academy Chamber Choir and the cast list was complete. 
Through working with different groups in the area, I am fortunate to have excellent musician contacts too and I was delighted when Adam Hollingshurst took on the role of Musical Director working with Charlie Jackson (Keys 2 and Musical Arrangements), Pete Morgan (Drums), Mark Crooks (Drums) and Andy Stewart (Reeds) to become the Standing In The Wings House Band. Having these talented five guys playing together was going to be magicaland they didnt disappoint! 

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Over several months we played with the set list trying to ensure there was entertainment for the audience but also poignant songs to hit the right note given the charity context. Hearing the company bring the songs to life during the three rehearsals we had was inspiring - they just got’ the empathy, humour and sensitivity needed for this event. 
In the background of rehearsals and confirming cast and band members, we were speaking to local businesses who might be able to sponsor the event. We were fortunate to have some fantastic support which made all the difference to what we could achieve on the night - our thanks to WifiNet Solutions, CAREL Academy, Andrew Reynolds Just Mortgages, Kennel Kuts, Signature Beauty, Recantha Design, Penguin Childcare, Adam Hollingshurst Book-keeping and The Business Community . Thrown into the mix were 8 generous donations from other businesses for our auction which was run by James Sealy from Bentons. Again, our thanks to Brian Currie, 3 St Peters, Emma Cameron, Christine Summerling, Northampton Spice, SophistiCake Creations, Sally Day Stationery & Gifts and Bentons.  
Very quickly the days and months rolled by and we were at show week. Whilst the cast and band were sounding amazing, no show is complete without the technical team and we were blessed to have some of the most talented techies onboard for this event. Lighting by Phil Valentine and Sound by Garry Mawbey meant we were in safe hands. Ricky Johnson headed up the team as Stage Manager and as always ensured a slick get in, tech/dress session and show followed by a smooth get out (although a late one!). Knowing that my vision would become a reality with these three on the show was a huge weight off my shoulders. 
On show day we were delighted to have a very smiley Front of House Team to welcome our audience, sell programmes, usher, sell drinks and of course collect donations! 
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At 7.30pm on 13th May, the curtain went up and what a show followed. Its difficult as a producer to say how brilliant the production was as Im always going to be a little bias but the six singers, choir, dancers, band, tech team and our host just blew me away with their talent and passion onstage and offstage. My goodness, did these stars make us laugh, cry, cheer and contemplate in equal measure.
Im always in awe of the team that come together to create events like this and my gratitude is unending when we worked out the many, many hours of rehearsal, prep time, promotion efforts and support the whole company put into making the event a success. Not only did the audience thoroughly enjoy the performances, but we raised over £1600 for the charity which we were over the moon with! 
Whilst were not planning any big performances at the moment, were being kept busy with Holiday Clubs, equipment hirings and working with local schools - all equally rewarding as charity performances, just slightly calmer! 
More information about the company can be found at or follow us on Facebook and Instagram.

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