Our Easter Show 2012. Auditions this Sunday. December 11th.

Next Year FCT will be staging 13 The Musical at The Pleasance Theatre in Edinburgh.

It’s been a smash hit on Broadway and is full of fantastic numbers like these ones.

This is the title track

And a few more…

The production team will be led by Ronan Radin, MD’d by Andrew McDivvit and Choreographed by Katie Renton; all three making their production debuts for FCT but all three ex cast members.  A lot of fun is guaranteed.


We’re all very excited about the auditions on Sunday.

Please be there, at Bangholm, prompt at 10am as we want to crack into the fun workshops we have planned!

If people have problems making the full day then please do get in touch as there may be a way to get round it!

We’d really appreciate it if you could all let your friends know about the auditions as it would be great to have as many people as possible. Please share this link on facebook (we’ll be checking to see who has actually done it).


If you have any questions then please get in touch with our director at ronanradin@hotmail.com

Looking forward to seeing you all on Sunday!

The production team x

Just So Scores four stars in ‘the news’

Once again the Evening News comes up trumps with a great review.
The opening night of Just So was a very challenging affair all in.  Twice the power tripped and the theatre was plunged into darkness.  But on both occasions cast and crew showed the utmost professionalism and we reached the end amidst tumultuous applause.
This was reflected in Josie Balfour’s four star  review.
Just So ****

St Bride’s Centre

EACH night, oh best beloved, men will lay out their two shoes and their little stone axe all in a line. A ritual preparation in order to have them handy for throwing at the cat when he scratches at the door to get out at 3am.

It’s a right passed down from father to son since before the days of Fred Flintstone and laid down in literature by Rudyard Kipling in the perennial children’s favourite Just So stories.

But The Cat That Walked By Itself is another story. Last night was devoted entirely to the journey the Elephant’s Child had to take on his path to a little more wisdom and a far greater nose.

Performed by the Forth Children’s Theatre, Just So is a two-hour musical melding of several of Kipling’s stories into one extravaganza.

Taking on the weighty mantle of director for the first time was 19-year-old Cameron Dyer who, after the FCT’s award-winning Ragtime last festival, had rather a lot to live up to.

Acquitting himself well, Dyer shows an excellent eye for putting a production together. He handles the technical very well but may want to pull away from playing too much with the set and focus on the storytelling, particularly the moments when important props need to be highlighted and the audience needs to focus on a character’s solo rather than the moving set.

The leads were well cast and wore their characters confidently. Despite wonderful diction, accents and pronunciation, though, their vocal projection often didn’t have the strength or range to carry the score.

Rebecca Gilhooley’s feisty Kolokolo Bird played an amusing and thought-provoking foil for Andrew McDivitt’s endlessly inquiring Elephant Child, while Becki Clark’s Eldest Magician had the engaging touch of a rather posh bedtime storyteller.

Esther Scott and Gus Harrower’s double act as the hermit Parsee Man and Cooking Stove spent much of the night threatening to steal the show, only to be given a good run for their money by Kangaroo (Ronan Rafferty) and Dingo Dog’s (Kirsty Shaw) cautionary tale of wishful thinking. The real highlight last night, however, was the cast and crew’s absolute professionalism in keeping the show on track through two brief power cuts.

FCT trio in Edinburgh has talent final forty.

Here are the instructions…

Simply text the word ENTALENT followed by a space then key in the special code of your chosen act,  followed by a space then please key your postcode to 81800. Example (ENTALENT 041 EH8 8AS)
Texts cost 60p plus your standard network rate.

Alternatively, and this is particularly strategic for our trio, you can buy the paper and fill in the voting slip – this method counts as TWO votes, rather than the one vote garnered from a text message.

Do the math: 60p text message = ONE vote.  43p newspaper cut-out slip = TWO votes.

Post completed cut-out slips to: Edinburgh’s Got Talent, 108 Holyrood Road, Edinburgh, EH8 8AS or hand deliver to the Talent postbox in reception at the same address.

The best bit is….. you can vote as many times as you like!

C’mon everyone, let’s get them in the top ten so they can perform on the big night.

So, if you’re texting get your votes in folks for Matty Smith  ENTALENT 001

Rebecca Gilhooley  ENTALENT 016

and Charlotte Jones ENTALENT 015

ENDA Time!

In the 30+ years of FCT’s existence only one actor in Hollywood achieved back-to-back Oscar success. Well, FCT have done the equivalent in their field with consecutive Best Musical ENDAs in 2008 and 2009. An incredible feat given the competition.

Read on….



Yes, a bit difficult to read – here is the full article…

Theatre groups full of cheer after second award in a row


Evening News  29 Aug 2009

TWO amateur theatre companies are celebrating after winning Evening News Drama Awards for the second consecutive year. Edinburgh Theatre Arts received the award for Best Play on this year’s Fringe at a glittering awards ceremony on the roof of The Gilded Balloon, in the Loft VIP Bar last night. The biggest cheer of the night came when Forth Children’s Theatre was named the winner of the Best Musical award for its production of Ragtime. It follows the youth theatre company’s success at the 2008 awards when it won the same accolade for its production of Jekyll and Hyde. Cabaret star Camille O’Sullivan presented Edinburgh Theatre Arts with the Best Play award for A Tale Of Two Cities, which centred on the French Revolution. Cabaret act Frisky and Mannish – also known as Laura Corcoran and Matthew Jones – presented Forth Children’s Theatre with its award. Frisky had the audience in fits of laughter when she said that both her and Matthew started off in the amateur world, which is “a great place to learn a sense of irony”. Chairman of Edinburgh Theatre Arts and director of A Tale Of Two Cities, John McLinden, 62, said: “It is fantastic to win the award because it is great recognition for six months of really hard work putting the show together. “It was quite a complicated show with 34 scenes, which we had to cram into St Ninian’s Church hall.” He laughed: “We also had to build a working guillotine for people to have their heads chopped off!” Director of Ragtime, Andrew Dyer, 23, added: “It is the second year in a row that we have won the award and we are very grateful. It was a very proud moment for everyone and the children are all fair away with themselves!” Around 100 actors, directors and producers from all 12 nominated amateur companies witnessed the presentation of this year’s awards. The awards were introduced by the Evening News two years ago to recognise the work of local companies during the Fringe. Edinburgh Theatre Arts, whose Fringe history dates back to the early seventies, won the Best Play for its production of Dennis Potter’s Blue Remembered Hills at last year’s awards. The drama awards were judged for the second year running by Scottish Community Drama Association adjudicator Ron Cattell, Evening News theatre critic Thom Dibdin, and Fiona Rogan – an arts professional with more than 30 years’ experience working with amateur groups across Scotland. The award for Best Musical was judged by Edinburgh actor Arron Usher, musicals producer Eleanor Brown, and James Haworth, general manager of the Edinburgh Playhouse. Mr Haworth, 39, said: “Many of the shows that the Edinburgh amateur companies have put on have actually been better than the professional productions I have seen this year. “The thing that you get from amateurs is an incredible enthusiasm.” “For amateurs to be able to perform in front of worldwide audiences is just an incredible treat for them.”

FCT wins the best Musical ENDA for second year running

On Friday night we gathered en-mass at the VIP Room at The Gilded Balloon to see how we had fared in the third ENDA Awards.  (Evening News Drama Awards) which are open exclusively for Edinburgh groups.  Liam Rudden has to be commended for bringing recognition to local groups in a Festival which is overwhelmed sometimes by comedy acts.

The Drama ENDA this year went to ETA for A Tale of Two Cities.  Well Done ETA on recording a double.

Next up; the best Musical award and we were facing Tempo and Edinburgh University’s Savoy Company.  We didn’t have to wait long though before the news we were all hoping for broke.  We’d won.  Again!

It was the perfect finish to the Fringe for a cast, band and crew that had truly excelled.

The moment of truth as Andrew Dyer hears the news...

The moment of truth as Andrew Dyer hears the news...

Roll on 2010.

The trophy.

The trophy.

Mark Gorman’s Review of Jekyll & Hyde


It’s been a crazy day.

Golf, driving lessons (more later) and at the end of it the latest FCT festival Show. Their 29th and the first with no hand of my dad involved.

The Director, Claire Stewart, speculated in her programme notes that parts of it would have given him ‘the tingles’ and there can be no doubt that she called that one right.

This show is actually so impressive that it makes you step back and re-evaluate this theatre company. But please don’t expect what follows to be unchallenging.

FCT has staged 58 productions and it’s fair to say they’ve seen the good, the bad and the ugly with a very strong leaning to the former. But, folks, The Lords of Creation? Everyone screws up sometime.

This show though? This was FCT on steroids.

A Cockerney setting.

FCT loves Cockerney – great excuse to do ‘accents’

However, it had a bleakness that was, unusually for FCT, not offset by a few gags and a singalonga happy chappy come on it’s not all that bad, number. (Doin’ the Lambeth Walk and all that.)

No, this was tragi-comedy without the laughs.

This was bleak.

But, hey, was Robbie LS looking for laughs?


He wrote a very focussed morality tale about good v evil in which (of course) good wins – well, the Victorians were a bit predictable.

Technically this was the most accomplished show in FCT history (perhaps Oh, What a Lovely War had more technical innovation but the lighting, sound and set in this show were awesome.) I sat in the back row and heard every word.

The choreography, I don’t know if you’d call it that, movement might be a better word, (see previous reference to lack of Lambeth Walks) was so considered and impactful as to punch you.

Aggressive, in your face.


Low, moody eyelines prevailed and worked fantastically . At one stage the chorus lined the auditorium, turning and looking pointedly and uneasing the audience. I loved that.

The costumes were probably the best I’d ever seen, so themed, by colour especially and such high quality. They contributed greatly to the sense of time.

The band? How insulting to call them a band. This was an orchestra. Their role in this performance was fundamental and flawless. At times I thought it must be a CD playing, it was so flawless. And boy, you guys owe a debt of gratitude to your sound man for mixing it all so brilliantly!

So, turning to the show itself. I’ll caveat the rest of my views with a question, a challenge I suppose, and one that I wasn’t alone in asking!

Was this show ‘on-brand’ for FCT?

At the interval I thought not. Even after it, and despite how good it was, I’m still asking myself that.

As Thom Dibdin said in his review in The Edinburgh Evening News the material causes problems for a Youth production, and I agree with him.

In the first act, at least, it seemed to me that it had been a little too unremitting in its gloom and too heavy on reliance upon the principals’ performances. The second act (nearly) changed my mind. Mainly because the highlight of the show ‘Murder Murder” opened the act, drew your breathe away and established the chorus as a vital part of the energy of the show. And the chorus is fundamentally what FCT has always been about. I’d be sad to see that go.

FCT need never consider a festival production of Waiting for Godot. (musical or otherwise.)

It was a small cast by FCT standards – only 33 – and I wondered, for a while, if less was really more, but the second act reassured me.

All of this sounds a bit negative, but the experience was far from negative. Because, cutting to the chase, this was singularly the most impressive FCT performance I have ever seen.

I’ll have to revert to superlatives now. Hannah Scott was awesome, just collosal in her performance as the hooker with a heart, Lucy, she very nearly stole the show.

But let’s be honest, how could she? She was supporting Matthew Smith who played both Jeckyll and Hyde with a maturity that has to defy his age. (I have little doubt that he will fulfill his ambition of singing on the West End because he is a major talent.) It so happens I also saw him in lighter mode at the Holy Cross Players Panto and he was a hoot.

Every single principal was on the nail, but ultimately it comes down to direction and I have to say Claire Stewart has once again performed a PB.

Whatever your views of the script/libretto (and in our group they were mixed) what Claire Stewart drew out of this group was simply brilliant. “Murder Murder” was one of the finest moments I have ever experienced in a theatre.

As a whole I feel the show is flawed. It’s a bit too bleak, and lacks light and shade during a lot of the, quite long, first half storytelling stage but every opportunity to squeeze a bit of interest out of it Claire Stewart took.

Overall verdict? Outstanding

Edinburgh Evening News Drama Award for Best Musical 2008



Homegrown stars clinch Evening News drama awards

Published Date: 22 August 2008

TWO of the Capital’s best known amateur theatre companies were celebrating yesterday after winning Evening News Drama Awards for Best Musical and Best Play, on the 2008 Fringe.

Members of Forth Children’s Theatre were left shocked and elated when, in their 30th anniversary year, they were presented with the inaugural Evening News Drama Award for Best Musical by BBC I’d Do Anything star, Niamh Perry, for their production of Jekyll and Hyde.

Director Claire Stewart said: “This play has been a total challenge for the kids as we’re used to doing bright, happy-clappy musical numbers, but this year we wanted to explore something more dark.”

Niamh said: “Amateur dramatics is where most of us start out. I was about 12 when I did my first amateur shows with the McMasters Stage School and Music Theatre for Youth.

“It’s my first time at the Festival and I’ve seen a whole range of shows but I honestly couldn’t tell you which were amateur and which were professional. They were all so good.”

Edinburgh Theatre Arts were also winners – they picked up the Evening News Drama Award for Best Play for their production of Dennis Potter’s Blue Remembered Hills. It was handed to them by Bullseye host Jim Bowen in a glittering ceremony in the Gilded Balloon’s Library Bar.

Director Mike Duffy said: “I am absolutely delighted, and surprised in a way because we were doing a play that wasn’t an obvious box office draw.

“Potter is most well known as a TV screenwriter but when I saw the play I always thought that it would be better performed on stage and I think we’ve just been proved right.”

Clearly starstruck in the presence of Jim Bowen, Mike described the former-Bullseye presenter as “a legend”.

After he handed over the award, Jim said: “I started in ‘am dram’ myself.

We never had any of the encouragement on offer here today, which is why awards like this are so important.”

More than 100 actors, directors and producers from all 13 nominated amateur companies watched the presentation of the Endas, introduced to recognise the work of local companies during the Fringe, where coverage is often dominated by large-scale productions from across the world.

The runner-up in the Best Play category went to Leitheatre for their production of Rikki Fulton’s A Wee Touch o’ Class, while Edinburgh University Savoy Opera Group came second in the Best Musical category.

Southern Light Opera Drama received the first Evening News Theatre Critic’s Commendation for their production of Black Chiffon, from Thom Dibdin.

SLO chairwoman and leading lady Elspeth Smith said: “I’ve read Tom’s reviews for many years and I must say it’s an honour to receive his commendation, but my fiercest critic is still my mother so I was even more delighted when she found our play enthralling.”

The expert judging panel consisted of included Evening News theatre critic Thom Dibdin, Edinburgh Playhouse general manager James Haworth, actor Arron Usher, musicals producer Eleanor Brown, and Ron Cattell and Fiona Rogan of the Scottish Community Drama Association.