Kung fu kicks off new season at Hippodrome

Janet Spooner, Michael Gill, Dan Clay and Christine Kidd star in Teechers, staged by TAODS at the Hippodrome Theatre, Todmorden.
Janet Spooner, Michael Gill, Dan Clay and Christine Kidd star in Teechers, staged by TAODS at the Hippodrome Theatre, Todmorden.

After last week’s Open Day at which Todmorden’s Deputy Mayor officially opened the new disabled toilet at the Todmorden Hippodrome, he is back at the theatre to launch TAODS’ new season of drama starting next week.

Michael Gill swaps his chains of office for a school-tie alongside Dan Clay, Christine Kidd, Andy Fraser and Janet Spooner in Teechers, a quick-fire comedy by Yorkshire playwright John Godber.

Five pupils put on an end-of-term play under the guidance of their new drama teacher, Mr Nixon.

Between them they play 20 characters; a range of kids and staff, with pace and great comic invention.

It is a loud and vigorous portrayal of life in a modern comprehensive school where the jokes cover a poignant political comment on the state of education.

Matt Parker, making his Todmorden directorial debut, has only had to do a little updating to make it as relevant today as it was when written at the end of the Eighties.

“The humour works as well as it ever did. It’s a very funny play. We’ve just had to bring a few of the references up-to-date,” he said.

John Godber was born the son of a miner in Upton, West Yorkshire, and trained as a teacher of drama at Bretton Hall College. Whilst head of drama at Minsthorpe High School he won every major award at the National Student Drama Festival between 1981 and 1983.

Teechers will run at the Hippodrome Theatre, Halifax Road, Todmorden from Wednesday, October 2, until Saturday, October 5. Tickets are on sale now, priced at £6 for opening night and concessions, £8 Thursday to Saturday, available from Todmorden Information Centre on Burnley Road, Todmorden (telephone 01706 818181), online at www.todhip.org or from the box office on 0844 8700 887.