The current form of Tenterden Operatic & Dramatic Society (TODS was bought to life in July 1958, by amalgamating The Tenterden Players and The Masquers – that makes this year our 63rd birthday! As a society, we are one of many small-scale drama organisations in the South East and are proud to be members of Kent Drama Association (KDA) and the National Operatic & Dramatic Association (NODA).
TODS, produces three shows each year – a Spring musical in February, a Spring play in May, and an Autumn play in October. Traditionally, the Spring musical was a good old-fashioned pantomime up until 1994, when TODS decided to branch into musical theatre. From our first ever musical production of My Fair Lady back in 1994 up to the present day, we pride ourselves on bringing quality and professional-standard productions to our little town of Tenterden and beyond. Our recent musical productions were Sister Act the Musical in 2018, Follies in 2019 and our last pre-pandemic production was Chicago in 2020. 2020 and 2021 saw an interuption in our schedule as a result of the Pandemic. Like other Theatre companies, both amateur and professional, TODS suffered an enforced hiatus, BUT, as Arnie Schwarzenegger said on many an occasion ‘We’ll be back” and we were with a bang!
However, during the hiatus we took part in the first ever KDA Radio Festival of 2021 and received a runner’s up award. The festival proved so successful that NODA will be continuing with an annual Radio Festival to run in parallel with the Stage Play Festival from 2022.
TODS were so excited to return to live theatre performances in February 2022, which we kicked off with a fantastic comedy, Alan Ayckbourn’s, Confusions, directed by Heather Barnes and Aaron Birks, a new member to TODS. Due to several postponements it was decided to push our Musical production, which usually takes place in February, to June. Our 2022 production is Calendar Girls the Musical, once more directed by Heather Barnes, and a welcome return to our Musical Director, Ian Harby. Cris Dressler will be providing additional musical support for this production. Usually our Autumn play is something a little different – be it a members’ night, variety show or a series of one-act plays.
We usually enter into KDA’s Full Length Play Festival with our Spring play, and we are proud to be able to boast of a plethora of awards for individual performances as well as the full-company. In 2019 we achieved the following for our production of Habeas Corpus:-
Habeas Corpus’– Director David Waters
Runner-Up: Best Lighting
Runner-Up: Best Sound
Runner-Up: Best Young Player – Max Chesters
Runner-Up: Best Actor in a Supporting Role – Geoff Down
Runner-Up: Best Actor in a Cameo Role – Michael Patrick
Runner-Up: Best Debut in a Full-Length Play – Tilly Milnes