about us

The founding members of Ensemble Theatre Company

Ensemble Theatre Company was established in January 2015 by a small group of talented and dynamic thespians aspiring to create a modern and engaging theatre experience to the unsuspecting inhabitants of South Leicestershire.

 

All of the founder members of the group met whilst performing with another local theatre group over a number of years, and decided to collaborate under a new name 'Ensemble'.

 

We are a dynamic company that performs musicals, variety shows, plays and murder mysterys in various venues, ranging from traditional theatre settings to restaurant dinner theatre.

 

 

We welcome new members interested in any aspect of theatre and encourage you to get in touch with any questions!

 

 

Meet the Committee

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Suzy Neal - Chairman

Suzy has been involved in amateur dramatics for 20 years both performing in, producing, and directing various shows. She graduated from University earning a Bachelor of Arts degree with honors in Drama Studies accredited with a 1st class for her thesis on ritualism within performance. During this time Suzy travelled to Berlin, Paris and New York to develop her studies of drama and performance. Suzy has worked in various stage schools as Director of Drama and was privileged to work closely and run workshops with various fellow professionals from around the country and the West End. Suzy has supported LAMDA coaching workshops and voted on a panel that auditioned 16 and over’s for access to a performing arts higher education diploma. Suzy has also worked with children and adults with learning disabilities and mental health conditions, supporting them to access and engage with performance arts. Suzy was one of the founding members of the Ensemble Theatre Company in 2015 and believes this group achieves the high standards of performance we've come to expect whilst also maintaining a fun and relaxed atmosphere.


Fun Facts:

Biggest Dramatic Achievement: Setting up ETC and watching it grow and expand has been a privilege and an honour. Suzy is incredibly proud of writing, directing and producing the show Encore, she is also incredibly proud to have produced the show The Wiz, ETC's first musical... 'It was a big show and a brave undertaking for the committee, production team and cast, but because of everyone's hard work, dedication and passion it was a huge success and a show I will always remember fondly'. From a performance point of view (yes she does get on the stage occasionally!) Suzy's favourite performance has been playing the part of Zoe in The Flint Street Nativity... 'I've never been so exhausted yet enjoyed a part so much, and hearing the audience hysterically laughing every night was magic'.

 

Worst part ever performed: Friar Tuck in the Robin Hood Pantomime- a bald cap, terrible script and director that would have been better suited as a Bond villain nearly put Suzy off from theatre for good! Thanks goodness it didnt though!!

Random fact: Suzy once did a live art performance that involved being covered in a lot of jelly!!

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Amy Vickerman - Vice-Chair

Amy has always enjoyed singing and has had a lifelong ambition to be in a musical, but apart from a brief stint as Sandy in Grease aged 9 this dream was unrealised until auditioning for Little Shop of Horrors in 2011. Here Amy found a love for theatre and hasn't had a month since where she hasn't been involved in a production either on or off stage. Having been with ETC from its very beginning, Amy loves the friendships she has developed and the memories she has made, and is so proud of the fabulous shows she has had the privilege to be part of so far.

Fun Facts:

Biggest Dramatic Achievement: Co-founding ETC and being part of such an amazing journey has been a huge achievement, but on stage Amy felt very privileged to be given the opportunity to play Elphaba from Wicked and perform ‘For Good’ under Suzy’s direction in Encore.

Worst part ever performed: Being a relative novice at this Amy has escaped any truly awful roles thus far, however she does recall having to wear a delightfully hideous wig as a dance hall girl in Sweet Charity.

Random fact: When Amy got the part of Sandy in Grease (Age 9), she actually auditioned for Danny, and then the two leads swapped parts as the young lady originally cast as Sandy was almost a foot taller than Amy!

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Fran Gould - Secretary

Fran's passion for the performing arts began at the age of 3 when she started ballet with the imperial academy of dance. This lead on to exciting opportunities with Leicestershire Arts and 2 performances at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. Fran has always enjoyed all aspects of theatre but loves Musical Theatre, working with many local groups such as SWM Theatre co and Sing ladies choirs before joining ETC for our Taste of Halloween show in October 2015. While Fran loves the roar of the crowd she is also happy to role up her sleeves and work on the production side including stage management, choreography and directing. Fran's drive to put on a great show and organisation skills means she is well placed as our secretary and affectionately known as ETC's 'Fairy Godmother'.

 

Fun Facts:

Biggest Dramatic Achievement: Directing and Producing Oliver! For SWM Theatre Co. Despite the really challenging schedule it was great to see 2 young members of the group take the principle roles. They not only stole a few pockets handkerchiefs but a few hearts too!

Worst part ever performed: Peach blossom fairy - Sleeping Beauty. "Being a girl who likes her food in a peach leotard and tutu didn't really give me much to work with. More fairy elephant than peach blossom fairy( thanks dad!)".

Random factOf all the parts Fran would love to play she would love the opportunity to be Velma in -Chicago. "I just like the theme, music and all that Jazz!"  

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Dan Neal - Treasurer

Dan started performing at the age of 13, when he realised that he didn’t actually want to be a Professional Wrestler OR a Pokémon trainer, and instead was bitten by the theatre bug. His stage debut was as The Cowardly Lion in South Wigston High School’s production of The Wizard of Oz and from there, he's always been drawn to performance. Following his passion he went on to gain a BA (hons.) in Theatre Arts from Middlesex University. Theatre has given him some of his fondest memories; it’s where he met his dearest friends, and the woman who would become his wife. Dan cannot imagine his life without the thrill of the Theatre.

 

Fun Facts:

Biggest Dramatic Achievement: Dans says he's had many parts he loves and many parts he is proud of but his most recent turn as the Tinman in ETC's The Wiz really was his proudest stage moment. "I loved the cast, the songs, the production and direction... it was fun and challenging and I will remember the experience fondly for the rest of my life". 

Worst part ever performedAnt number 3 in the production of 'The Insects'... he wasnt even Ant number 1!! 

Random factDan got to the 3rd round of BBC's 'Any Dream Will Do'. However according to Dan he didnt get any further because, unlike the eventual winner, he wasnt prepared to sleep with Denise Van Outen! (Bitter much?!)

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Hannah Desjardins - Front of House Coordinator

Hannah has been singing since she could speak, (and to anyone who would listen) in choirs, am dram at high school and gigs at university. Missing the rush of performing and laughing through rehearsals, Hannah found ETC and armed with the coordination of someone with undiagnosed dyspraxia she threw herself into her first ETC show; West End Story. From the giggles and near misses at rehearsals, to the delirious late night discussions at committee meetings, Hannah knew she was lucky enough to have found not just a group of friends she could share a hobby and a passion with, but beautiful, supportive, hilarious friends she can share her whole life with.


 

Fun Facts:

Biggest Dramatic Achievement: Hannah says this question is a very easy one. After joining Ensemble Theatre Company and performing in supporting roles, Hannah was over the moon to be cast as the lead role 'Dorothy' in the musical The Wiz in the summer of 2016. She worked incredibly hard learning various difficult songs, dances and pages and pages of lib. Hannah loved the role and the show and will always be proud of her self and her fellow cast and production team for putting on such a brilliant show!

Worst part ever performedAlways ready to be supportive, Hannah once attended an audition with a friend just for moral support - However to her surprise, the panel thought she was auditioning too and offered her the part of Ghost Grandma in the play matchstick girl. Suffice to say it wasn't Hannah's favourite moment on stage!

 

Random fact: Hannah couldn't think of a random fact related to the stage... but she can't ride a bike!!

 

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Laura Stone - Fundraising Secretary

Laura has always enjoyed performing. From a very young age she was creating shows to perform with her sister to her parents and grandparents in the comfort of her front room. At the age of 7 she starred the lead role of Mary in the school Nativity and at 11 she knew she loved the stage even more when she had a key role in the Year 6 production. She went on to do GCSE drama and A Level performing arts as well as performing across Europe with her school performing arts group for 4 years. At university she joined a dance group but missed the drama side of things. Once qualifying as a teacher she began to produce and direct productions with children at her primary school and still does this now. She has loved every moment of ETC since she has joined; "It's like a little family who all have completely different lives but the love of performing brings them altogether".


 

Fun Facts:

Biggest Dramatic Achievement: Out of all of Laura's experiences on the stage, one of her proudest moments has to be in her recent role as 'Scarecrow' in ETC's interpretation of the hit musical 'The Wiz' in June 2016. "It was exciting, energetic, challenging and so much fun , It was a chance for me to thrive in my dancing and acting but also gave me the opportunity to face my fears and build confidence in my singing!".

Worst part ever performed: Hippolyta, the queen in Midsummer Nights dream. “Let’s say removing that from memory would be pretty nice!”

Random Fact: Laura, in the past, has performed on the streets of Italy, Germany, Spain and Austria as part of the Performing Arts Group during her school days. She participated in the acting and dancing and avoided singing at all costs... until joining ETC of course, then everything changed!!

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Rebecca Ritchie - Publicity Officer

Info to follow soon!


 

Fun Facts:

Biggest Dramatic Achievement: 

Worst part ever performed

Random Fact: 

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