RAFTA joins RSC Open Stages!

RSC LogoWe are delighted to announce that the RAFTA Project 2011 – Return to the Forbidden Planet, has been accepted as part of the RSC Open Stages project 2011/12. RSC Open Stages is a new project that aims to embrace, develop and celebrate amateur theatre, re-forging the bond with the world of professional theatre.

This is an excellent opportunity for RAFTA and further details of the Open Stages project can be found by following the links on the Project 2011 page.

OAPF 2011

Dear RAFTA Members,

This year’s RAFTA One Act Play Festival will be held at RAF Cranwell 27-29 May 2011. You should have received by e-mail the calling notice and attendance form if you wish to attend but are not with a participating Club.

If you have not then please contact info@rafta.co.uk to be sent this information.

Playwriting Competition 2011

The 2011 Playwriting Competition is now open. Plays may be submitted by members of RAFTA to one of two categories: Full length play or One Act play and submissions should reach the membership secretary no later than 31 May 2011.

Full details and competition rules can be obtained by contacting Rich Bratley, the membership secretary (membership@rafta.co.uk).

36th AGM held 30 Oct 2010 – Report

The 36th RAFTA AGM was held on 30th October at the Union Jack Club, London. Around 30 members of the Association attended including the new President Air Cdre Barbara Cooper and honorary Vice-President Dr Jim Greig. The President’s opening address was very positive noting progress on the intended ‘home for theatre’ at RAF Cranwell and her huge enjoyment of the One Act Play Festival at RAF Lyneham this year. She also touched on the inevitable effects that SDSR will have across the RAF, but encouraged all RAFTA clubs to do their utmost to promote, at Station level, the benefits and importance of theatrical endeavour. Finally, she encouraged the Association to use Project 2011 as an engagement vehicle to raise its profile, not only with the higher echelons of the RAF, but also with the media and the general public.

The revised Constitution, a  requirement for the Association to apply for charitable status was ratified. The constitution will now be presented to the Charities’ Commission for scrutiny and approval.

This new website was also unveiled to the meeting and was well received. Suggestions and feedback were welcomed to help the website developer take the project forward.
Finally, the annual award ceremony concluded the meeting. This culminated in the award of a RAFTA Fellowship to Wg Cdr(Ret’d) Ellis Artus as recognition for his longstanding support for RAFTA and dedicated work on the Committee particularly as Adjudications Coordinator.

Read on for the results and photos of the awards being presented.

Orders from Sir Patrick

A Message from The New President of RAFTA

From Air Cdre Barbara Cooper CBE RAF, President RAFTA and currently Comdt Air Cadets, based at RAF Cranwell.

RAFTA President Air Cdre Barbara Cooper CBE RAFI love live theatre in all its guises – I adore the way it transports you to another world – prevents you from thinking about the here and now, and plays with your emotions, leaving you drained or elated at the end. There’s nothing like it. Now, I’m not a squirrel by nature, but I happened to come across a 1979 edition of the ‘Finningley Observer’ the other day and I read a review of a play in which I had played a small part (“Blodwen – the maid”, if you must know). The reviewer said of my performance “played with much gusto and humour”. Having recently attended the RAFTA festival of one act plays held at RAF Lyneham this year, I realise that my performance definitely fell into the ‘damned by faint praise’ category! That marked the start and end of a very short theatrical career for me in the RAF – until now that is! Imagine my surprise and pleasure when, some 30 years later, I was approached by your Chairman to take on the role of President. I’m thrilled and honoured of course, but I can’t help but feel that there might be someone out there who has contributed much more to RAFTA over the years and who therefore might make a more worthy choice. But until that time, I am very proud to be your President and will do everything I can to support you. Theatre has relevance in so many aspects of life – after all, wasn’t it Shakespeare who said “All the world’s a stage, and all the men and women merely players”.

Play on – I look forward to meeting you in the forthcoming years.