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Shiplake and Dunsden Dramatic Organisation

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SHADDO website

In 1999, a local group entitled MAD (Millenium Amateur Dramatics) got together for the first time to produce Aladdin in Shiplake College's Tithe Barn in aid of the Shiplake and Dunsden Parish appeal.

Following the success of the venture, the group reinvented itself as SHADDO (Shiplake and Dunsden Dramatic Organisation) and decided to produce a further pantomime. The proceeds were to be ploughed back into the local village venue, Shiplake Memorial Hall, with the aim of restoring the vestiges of a local theatre to the village, following the untimely demise of the Shiplake Players some three decades ago.

The annual pantomome is an experience we would love to share with anyone out there who fancies joining us – you don‘t need to be able to act! Perhaps you fancy set design, playing music, helping with wardrobe, prompt, scenery shifting, sourcing props, selling tickets, staffing the bar, applying make-up or any of the other vital roles which come together to create a community amdram society.  Please don’t be shy – all ages are welcome, so bring your talent to SHADDO and see how much fun you can have – we’d love to have you on board!

If you are interested in getting involved with SHADDO, please contact Pip Collings on 07796 46675.

Panto opens tonight


Snow White & the Seven Dwarfs opens tonight (Thursday) at the Shiplake Memorial Hall. Doors open at 7 for a 7.30 start. Tickets are available at £5 on the door.

Tickets are no longer for sale at the shops as there are now very few available. As of this afternoon (Thursday) there are 10 available for Friday evening, 5 for the Saturday Matinee and 15 for the Saturday evening performances. To reserve tickets for collection and payment on the door for the Friday or Saturday performances phone Angela on 07759 839953.

For uptodate information on tickets please visit the SHADDO website

Please make sure you collect and pay for your tickets by no later than 7.25pm otherwise we'll assume you aren't coming and will sell them on.

Article created / last edited: 27 January 2017

Snow White the Pantomime - the perfect potion to perk you up post-Christmas


The Shiplake and Dunsden Dramatic Organisation (SHADDO) brings you award winning script writer Ben Crocker’s hilarious re-telling of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. From the fearsome and wicked Queen Caligula to the innocent and charming Snow White, this production will have you laughing, singing, hissing, and booing at every turn.

Magic mirrors, poisonous apples, plots, picnics, and 6 ½ dwarfs – a taste of what’s in store, as well as being dazzled and mesmerised by real life magic.

 The pantomime will run from Thursday 26th January to Saturday 28th January 2017 at 7.30pm (2.30pm for Saturday matinee) at the Shiplake Memorial Hall, Memorial Ave, Shiplake Cross, Henley-on-Thames RG9 4DN.

Tickets are available from the Shiplake and Binfield Heath Village shops and will also be available on the door:

  • £5 for Thursday night
  • £8 for Saturday matinee
  • £10 for Friday or Saturday nights.

There is a 50p discount per ticket for groups of 10 or more.

For more information please contact Pip Collings (SHADDO secretary) pipcollings3@outlook.com  Tel: 07799 646675

“Mirror mirror on the wall, maybe I will go to the SHADDO pantomime after all…” 

Article created / last edited: 2 January 2017

SHADDO’s 2016 production of Cinderella

Cinderella cast 

Was it brilliant? Oh yes it was!

In the familiar surroundings of the Shiplake Memorial Hall, SHADDO treated us yet again to a healthy serving of pure pantomime gold – dazzling costumes, artistic and well thought out sets, and a truly unique perspective on a host of familiar characters. Director Pip Collins, supported by a dedicated and immensely talented community, delivered a memorable take on the Cinderella story, injecting fresh enthusiasm and vigour into the tale with which we are all familiar.

From the various rooms in the dilapidated and declining house of the Baron Boracic-Lint, to the grandeur and majesty of the Palace, we were transported into the starkly different worlds of Cinderella and the ever charistmatic Prince Charming. Vivid colours, scenes, and attention to detail enabled the audience to be transported effortlessly into these spaces with the backdrop to the Palace Ball representing the pinnacle of artistry that the creative and design team worked so hard to create. The set transformations and overall orchestration of the space, diligently and skillfuly managed by Henry Loud and his team, ensured a smooth running and breathless pace.

But no pantomime could survive on such visual sustenance alone. The characters and the script provided a huge amount of entertainment, laughter and humorous interaction for the audience. Whether being greeted with the whimsical ambition of Tina White’s Fairy Godmother and her student-in-tow nephew Ed In-the-Clouds played by Luke Boughey; the tragic plight of Ellie Classey’s Cinderella living under the cruelty of her vile and wonderfully wicked Step-sisters, fiendishly delivered by Mark Manson and Neil George, battling with the ever lovable Buttons brought to life by Simon Classey, who valiantly tries to protect her; or the dashing, suave and supremely talented Emma Piercey as Prince Charming, ably squired by Neil McAdam’s faithful Lord Dandini; we were treated to sharp delivery, comedy and forgetfulness, which was beautifully remedied by much improvisational tonic (with a generous measure of gin!). Of course, these were by no means the only characters to deliver outstanding performances and no role was superfluous to requirement.  A special mention to the junior members who delivered a number of expertly choreographed and entertaining dance routines which never failed to have people moving in their seats. No review of a SHADDO production would be complete without mentioning the effervescent Fab 4. The audience was treated to a cheerleading routine to ‘Reach for the Stars’ making it impossible not to clap along with child-like glee.  Also a first for Shiplake was the appearance of superstar actor and blueprint for handsomeness, George Clooney, albeit in cardboard mask form. Maybe next time George…?

The final ingredients to add to this most delicious of pantomime stews (maybe I should have had lunch before sitting down to write) are that of the entire production crew. From staging, choreography, make-up, music and lighting to front of house, bar staff, publicity and directing – every member of the entire crew should be commended for the work they put into this production. Technical Director Gareth Jones and his team brought the stage to life with clever lighting, music and sound effects, adding a richness that immersed the audience into the Panto experience. And speaking of music, the singing of Piercey, both Classey’s and McAdam, brought real emotion to each of their characters’ journey with beautiful harmonies, melodies and scales galore! Two particular pieces of magical stagecraft, which would be remiss of me not to mention, are that of Cinderella’s ball gown reveal and the transformation of a mere pumpkin into the carriage that would transport Cinderella to the ball. Cheryl Milne and Neill Wilkinson respectively must be congratulated for these theatrical achievements.

For those who have never been to a SHADDO production I would highly recommend that you make a concerted effort to come next year. What more could one want from an evening’s entertainment than a good old-fashioned yarn littered with excitement, humour and the odd mishap along the way. All in all Cinderella was leg-slappingly good fun. 

Article created / last edited: 8 February 2016