19 Mar 2015

Welcome: My Theatre Mates

Want to be mates? Leave a comment saying hi!

I want to talk about my mates. Specifically my theatre mates. Over the past year I have made loads of them. Why? Because I started saying hello a whole lot more. Trust me it works. One of the people I always admired from afar that I was initially perhaps a bit afraid of saying hello to was the theatrical tour de force, Terri Paddock. You know Terri, right? She was pretty much the brains behind WhatsOnStage for 16ish years. She runs a whole host of post theatre chats and has many irons in theatrical fires. What a lady!

As 2014 was kind of my “Yes Man” year, I decided that I WAS going to say hello to Terri and I have to say I am so glad I did.

Terri and Mark

After a rather grueling couple of years for Terri, she is now in cahoots with leading theatre critic, Mark Shenton. This pair of “mates,” friends and co-conspirators, have set up a new theatre venture, aptly named “My Theatre Mates.” Cute.

My Theatre Mates is a digital hub that aims to collate the best content from their own individual websites and soon a wealth of additional content from other theatre voices, like me (let’s hope anyway.)

Also recognised

Also Recognised Awards

Awards are a bit of a tricky beast; “who do you recognise” can often be translated as “who do you value.” Following last year’s debacle in which some awarding bodies axed various previously “recognised” categories, there were a few bad vibes out there in the industry, something Terri and Mark hope to challenge in their very own awards ceremony – the Also Recognised Awards.

Best Musical Direction

Tom Deering, Made in Dagenham, Adelphi Theatre
Simon Lambert, The Return of the Soldier, Jermyn Street Theatre
Tim Sutton, Memphis, Shaftesbury Theatre
Freddie Tapner, Girlfriends, Union Theatre
Alan Williams, Assassins, Menier Chocolate Factory
Elliott Ware, Sunny Afternoon, Hampstead & Harold Pinter Theatres

Best Original Music

David Byrne & Fatboy Slim, Here Lies Love, National Theatre, Dorfman
David Bryan & Joe DiPietro, Memphis, Shaftesbury Theatre
Benj Pasek & Justin Paul, Dogfight, Southwark Playhouse
Grant Olding, Drunk, Bridewell Theatre
Charles Miller and Tim Sanders, Return of the Soldier, Jermyn Street Theatre
Stephen Flaherty and Lynn Ahrens, Dessa Rose, Trafalgar Studios

Best Ensemble Performance

The Play That Goes Wrong, Duchess Theatre
Toast, Park Theatre
Drunk, Bridewell Theatre
Another Country, Trafalgar Studios
Forbidden Broadway, Menier Chocolate Factory & Vaudeville Theatre

Best Solo Performance

Kevin Bishop, Fully Committed, Menier Chocolate Factory
Benjamin Scheuer, The Lion, St James Studio
Fiona Shaw, The Testament of Mary, Barbican Theatre
Kevin Spacey, Clarence Darrow, Old Vic Theatre
Juliet Stevenson, Happy Days, Young Vic Theatre

Best Shakespearean Production

The Comedy of Errors, Shakespeare’s Globe
Henry IV, Donmar Warehouse
King Lear, National Theatre, Olivier
The Merchant of Venice, Almeida Theatre
Richard III, Trafalgar Transformed, Trafalgar Studios

London Newcomer of the Year

Damian Buhagiar, In the Heights, Southwark Playhouse
Laura Jane Matthewson, Dogfight, Southwark Playhouse
Barney Norris (playwright), Visitors, Arcola & Bush Theatres
Eva Noblezada, Miss Saigon, Prince Edward Theatre
Chris Macdonald (playwright), Eye of a Needle, Southwark Playhouse
Patsy Ferran, Blithe Spirit, Gielgud Theatre

Best Twitter Engagement

@lesmisofficial, Les Miserables, Queen’s Theatre
@bookofmormonldn, The Book of Mormon, Prince of Wales Theatre
@youngvictheatre, Young Vic Theatre
@urinetownUK, Urinetown, St James & Apollo Theatres
@TrafTransformed, Trafalgar Transformed, Trafalgar Studios

Best Show Poster

John, DV8, National Theatre, Lyttelton
King Charles III, Almeida & Wyndham’s Theatres
The Testament of Mary, Barbican Theatre
Treasure Island, National Theatre, Olivier
Urinetown, St James & Apollo Theatres

Best Show Trailer

Miss Saigon, Prince Edward Theatre
Charlie & the Chocolate Factory (new cast), Theatre Royal Drury Lane
1984, Headlong Theatre
Medea, National Theatre, Olivier
Birdland, Royal Court Theatre
Notes from Underground, The Print Room

Theatre Event of the Year

Lindsay Lohan making stage debut in Speed-the-Plow – and completing the run
Reopening of Apollo Theatre in March, just three months after ceiling partially collapsed
Opening of Sam Wanamaker Playhouse at Shakespeare’s Globe
Opening of Dorfman Theatre (formerly Cottesloe) as part of NT Futures Project
Inaugural #LoveTheatre day on Twitter
The announcement of Richard Bean’s Great Britain within 24 hours of News of the World phone hacking trial conclusion

I have already voted in he Also Recognised Awards and you can too at www.mytheatremates ! Results will be announced on April 16th Via the My Theatre Mates site.


My Mates


Terri and Mark have said on their site that they consider themselves “mates” to anyone who shares their values…e.g. “ theatre-makers who want to produce great art (commercially and artistically) and theatre-goers who want to support it with bums on seat and word of mouth.” I here ya, guys.

After finally introducing myself to Terri, I definitely consider her my theatre mate. I have yet to be formally introduced to Mark but I am sure we are future mates in the making!

Starting to say “hello” more often was one of the best things that I did last year, personally and professionally. Why don’t you try it too? You can start by giving My Theatre Mates a big ‘ol wave!



Rebecca is a cheeky London lady with a love of theatre, cheese and wine (preferably all at the same time!) She graduated from Goldsmiths (University of London) with a First Class Honours degree in Drama and Theatre Arts and later went on to study for an NCTJ postgraduate diploma in Journalism.


As a lifelong fan of Michael Jackson's music and choreography, experiencing


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