I love going to the theatre. And I love every type of performance from the RSC to school plays to farce and musicals. When Ros and Neil Johnson asked me to work with them to promote the first Wells Theatre festival I jumped at the chance.

My background is in marketing and design. I am the Marketing Director of bartlett mitchell, a workplace restaurant company. Over the last thirty years I have devised communication for many different types of organisations from charities to Global brands and even for a Jazz festival, but I have never worked in the theatre world before.

I wanted to be part of the festival because I have found theatre and live performance to be a stimulating and life-shaping experience, whether as a performer or in the audience.  My first acting experience was as Alice in Alice in Wonderland at school. It was thrilling. As well as learning lines, it was my first experience of seeing beautiful costumes created and scenery painted. It left a lasting impression on me and my classmates. I still feel lucky that with my almost black hair I could possibly play Alice in Wonderland!

The cost of theatre tickets can make regular trips to the theatre out of reach, especially when you add on a trip to a larger town or city, parking and refreshments. That’s one of the many reasons I wanted to get on board with the festival by bringing world class theatre to Wells. It’s democratising theatre, it’s theatre for everyone and with the sponsorship we received from local businesses last year we were able to fund free places for lots of local school children.

By volunteering for the festival I have got involved in the Wells community, made new friends and met a huge amount of wonderfully supportive people, from Alex giving us water for the marquee, Paul and David lending us their garden and all the amazing yellow t-shirted festival-makers who flooded Wells with help for our first festival.

I am not embarrassed to say that I shed a tear (of relief, elation and pride) when it was all over – and I am now very excited about 2019. Ros Johnson has done an incredible job seeking out more unique performers for this year’s festival. The community play – Much Ado About Nothing has been chosen and I can’t wait to start sharing all the great shows we have planned.

So, if you have some spare time this year and what to be part of something extra-special get involved- buy tickets or sign up to volunteer with us.