Thursday, March 1, 2007
Local theatrics as interesting as local rugby
Some of the most popular annual events in our part of the world is the series of shows put on by local amateur operatic societies here in the Scottish Borders.
Each town has its own society and each puts on a week-long run of performances in the local town hall, one after the other.
First up, as always, was Melrose last week. Now the Melrose Society always performs something by Gilbert and Sullivan, as is their custom, and this year was no different with a production of “Pirates of Penzance.”
Some years ago there was a big screen version made, starring the likes of Kevin Kline and Linda Ronstadt.
All our amateur productions star local people and there is always fierce competition for the starring roles, while almost every performance at every town of every production is virtually guaranteed to be a sell-out.
This week, we are currently enjoying Selkirk Amateur Operatic Society’s production of “Kiss Me Kate,” with its superb musical score by the legendary Cole Porter.
Next week, it will be the turn of Galashiels with “Oliver!” then Hawick, Kelso and Innerleithen.
Amateur musicals and drama have always been very popular here in the Scottish Borders - something that stems from long ago probably when you could only rely on yourselves for providing your own entertainment.
The local amateur theatrical companies take great pride in their shows and mums and dads, brothers and sisters, all turn out to see folk they know taking part.
Maybe it’s just that everyone is a little bit of an exhibitionist at heart - who knows!
Elsewhere, local rugby fans are trying to get over the pasting our national team took off Italy in Edinburgh on Saturday.
It doesn’t bode well for the match against Six Nations favourites Ireland and France over the next few weeks.
My wife Ally and I will be making the trip to Murrayfield in Edinburgh for the game against the Irish with fingers crossed.
Mind you, whatever the score, it should be a great game and the atmosphere will be fantastic. Edinburgh will be a sea of green and orange as Irish supporters make the short trip to Scotland for the match.
Rugby is at something of a crossroads yet again here in Scotland. We have only three professional teams, one of which is based in the Scottish Borders.
But it is the side that is struggling, not just in terms of results, but also to attract enough support.
The Borders is the heartland of Scottish rugby but for some reason, local supporters just have not taken to the region’s professional side.
And now there is speculation that the team could be axed to save money.
Maybe instead we should look to get a franchise for a U.S. baseball or American football team instead!
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