I was cast as the lead in The Crucible with the Service Players in 2004. The first time I walked out onto the stage before we had set was an experience I will never forget. Awe inspiring and humbling, but exhilarating at the same time.
We enlisted as 'FOGS' shortly after moving to the island. Our first show in that capacity was The Panto for Xmas 2000. It was a baptism by fire. We wondered what on earth we had let ourselves in for when surveying the mess to be cleared up at the end. Fortunately, fellow volunteers assured us that this was as bad as it gets and we are still happily 'Fogging' 20 years on.
I first visited The Gaiety in 2002 during our 1st visit to IOM and often attended performance's for the next 10 years whilst visiting on holiday. Then in January 2012 we moved to this magic island and have since enjoyed wonderful musical's, plays, presentations and music acts. The theatre is beautiful and was built by Frank Masham who also built The Everyman, in Cheltenham - where I lived and enjoyed that theatre until we moved here.
First memory is speech afternoon at St Ninians when we were given certificates for our O & A levels. The last time was for our A levels when I had started working for Lloyds Bank. It was great to see all my old friends who had all left to go to University on the mainland. I didn't want to leave the island...It was so memorable because it was the last time that we were all back in our old forms.
The second time was a few years ago when we took my mum for a behind the scenes tour. It was so interesting! She had been there many times over the years and to see how things are behind the scenes was really illuminating for her.
My first visit to the Gaiety, I was four or five, and I remember this moment as if it was yesterday. My mum had taken me to see Carousel - she was a huge fan of musicals and, I suspect, was glad she now had a daughter to take along to watch these things with. I remember the ghost of Billy being on the stage and being absolutely and utterly convinced that everything which had happened on the stage was real and that he was a ghost. I couldn’t actually breathe with the excitement of it all and my mum had to remind me that it was pretend like the TV. I remember looking at her and looking back at the stage and deciding that this was so much better than the TV and the best thing to ever happen to me. Since then I’ve been lucky enough to stand on the same stage and be a part of many productions. My only sadness is that my mum died when I was 14 and never got to see me perform at the Gaiety but whenever I stand on that stage and I look out into that very special auditorium, I think of her and where we were sat and that production of Carousel which had such an impact on my life.