Now we are almost ready to tell our best Tod tales

REHEARSALS and last minute preparations are underway for this weekend’s production of the winning monologues in the Voices of Todmorden competition at the Hippodrome Theatre.

Actors, directors, technical teams and co-ordinators are all busy and even the writers are getting involved, making sure their work is shown to its best potential over the two evenings, writes Andy Fraser.

Alison Shelton, a previous overall winner of the competition, this year directing her own winning entry, says: “We’ve got so much to do with only the one monologue, it must be a nightmare to co-ordinate all six.” Alison is directing friend and TAODS actor Richard Holley in her piece, and he is not the only Holley involved.

Mum, Christine also has a winning monologue being performed, though she prefers not to get involved in the staging.

Joyce Branagh is another winning writer leaving it to the TAODS members. Joyce is a professional theatre director but prefers to let others bring her writing to life.

Compère for both evenings will be long-standing Hippodrome stalwart, Michael Gill. “It promises to be an exciting and varied evening,” he says. “We’ve got stories about everything from immigration to werewolves and, of course, some genuine voices of Todmorden.”

The performances will take place in the foyer of the Hippodrome Theatre, Halifax Road, Todmorden on Friday and Saturday, with one overall winner being announced on the Saturday evening.

The doors open 7pm, and performances start at 7.30pm.

0Tickets are £5 available from the box office, Todmorden Tourist Information Centre in person, by calling 01706 818181, or by booking online at