County Drama Festival
The County Drama Festival is the longest-established of all the SFD's competitive drama festivals. It is for one act plays of at least 20 minutes (but no more than 55 minutes) duration, and which involve at least two speaking roles. They are adjudicated publically, usually by a member of the Guild of Drama Adjudicators (GODA). It is open to any group affiliated to the SFD. Original writing is very welcome, and Youth groups are encouraged to take part. The winner can opt to go forward and represent the County in the Western Division of the All England Theatre Festival, and in successive rounds all the way up to the British Final. The winning Youth Group also goes on to represent us in the Five Counties Youth Festival in April, which is held in one of the four/five participating counties. Somerset were last the hosts in 2014. You can see the history of previous winners here.
In the early days, before TV held such sway, there were several heats held in village halls all round the county, with the final usually being held at Bridgwater Arts Centre and later at the Warehouse Theatre in Ilminster. As groups became more ambitious, requiring larger acting areas and more sophisticated lighting, the Festival came to be held in one venue - usually one of the larger theatres - over a weekend towards the end of March. The Committee are always on the look-out for suitable venues around Somerset.
Any group wanting more details or an entry form should contact the County Drama Coordinator .
County Drama Festival 2019
The County Drama Festival was held on Saturday 23rd/Sunday 24th March 2019 at The Warehouse Theatre in Ilminster, and was adjudicated by Nancy Heath, GODA.
The County Shield: IES for A Resounding Tinkle
The Cely Trevillian Bowl (Best Production of an Original Play): Teignmouth Players for Nuts
The Hope Cup: Taunton Thespians for Red Peppers
The Lydia Durston Trophy (Greatest Endeavour): Wells Little Theatre for Counting Your Chickens
The Brian Edwards Trophy (Technical Achievement): Wells Little Theatre for Counting Your Chickens
Best Actress Nominations: Ann Cook as Middie (IES); Keely Beresford as Miss Tait (Troupers); Lindsey Crane as Lily (TT)
Best Actress Winner: Keely Beresford as Miss Tait in The Flag (Troupers)
Best Actor Nominations: Mick Glynn as Bro (IES); Mark Wall as Nobby (Wells); Dean Harris as Squire Harding (Bleadon); Marcus Palmer as George (TT)
Best Actor Winner: Dean Harris as Squire Harding in The Weatherman's Harvest (Bleadon Players)
The Edward Grey Memorial Trophy (Best Performer under 30) Nominations: Lewis Bradbury as George (Clevedon School); Harvey Mills as Joseph (Make Performing Arts); Oli Carlier as Becky (Clevedon School)
The Edward Grey Memorial Trophy (Best Performer under 30) Winner: Lewis Bradbury as George in Kill Jill (Clevedon)
The Eyris Jones Memorial Trophy (Best Production by a Youth Group): Clevedon School for Kill Jill
A full report on this year's County Drama Festival, written by Sam Allen, can be found in Spotlight Online.
The County Drama Festival 2020 will be held at The Warehouse Theatre, Ilminster over the weekend 21st/22nd March and will be adjudicated by Nick Wilkes. Entry forms will be sent to Club Contacts, or anyone else who has expressed an interest, in the first week of November.