Audiences enjoy one-act plays as Maidenhead Drama Festival returns

Audiences enjoyed a host of funny, sad, and moving one-act plays as Maidenhead Drama Festival returned for another year.

The annual festival is part of the All England Theatre Festival, which is countrywide, and is the only competition for one-act plays in England.

The event, which is supported by The Louis Baylis Trust, took place from Thursday, May 19 to Saturday, May 21 at Norden Farm.

A total of eight one-act plays – six adult and two youth – were performed over the three days.

Chair and organiser of Maidenhead Drama Festival Carol Hennessy said: “[We had] a huge variety.

“We had funny ones, we had sad ones, we had some that made you cry.

“Some of them were original scripts, some of them were written by well-known playwrights.

“There were a couple that were really very moving.”

As well as performances from regular favourites such as Maidenhead Drama Guild, there were two newcomers to the festival this year – Oxford Theatre Guild and Ham Theatre.

On Saturday, prizes were presented by Advertiser editor James Preston, with Bishopstoke Players winning the top award – the Maidenhead Advertiser Trophy – for Out of The Frying Pan.

The group chose not to progress to the next stage of the theatre festival, so runners up Woking College Theatre Company went through to compete in the Eastern Area Final, which also took place at Norden Farm on Sunday.

Young Theatre Beaconsfield also qualified for the Eastern Area Final in the youth section for their performance of Bar and Ger.

The winners of the four regional finals will take part in the final, which is set to take place over the Jubilee weekend.

Five acts, including three adult and two youth groups, took part in the Eastern Area Final, with Maidenhead Drama Festival entry Woking College Theatre Company coming out on top as the adult winners, and LCA Stage Academy, representing Southern Counties Drama Festival, becoming the youth winners.

Both will now move forward to the upcoming English Final, competing against winners of the central, northern and western areas.

Discussing the Eastern Area Final, Carol added: “I think that went really well.”

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