Fiona-Jane Weston and Hugh Bonneville in To End All Wars
To End All Wars – World War 1 Memorial Concert
Fiona-jane Weston and Hugh Bonneville in To End All Wars
It’s been a busy couple of months with rehearsals and performances. Fabulous pianist William Godfree and I were the first theatre show to open at a lovely new community venue at 96 Shenley Road, Borehamwood (see photo), where the staff came from Wyllyots Theatre. Potters Bar to run it. Lovely audience and great feedback.
96 Shenley Rd, Borehamwood
I was proud too to perform at the World War 1 memorial concert To End All Wars in the Milland Memorial Hall, West Sussex with William, former BBC broadcaster Martin Muncaster and Hugh Bonneville. Many thanks to West End actress Janie Dee for passing my details on to them. I really enjoyed both preparing for it and performing on the day. Patrick (my husband) and I stayed with the Brigadier who organised the event, and he lent me a beautiful dress made for his late wife to meet the Queen – I can’t tell you how I felt!
Fiona-Jane Weston and Hugh Bonneville backstage in To End All Wars
Chatting after the Show – To End All Wars
Actors Rechoired held our bi-annual concert at the quirky and wholly appropriate venue The Cinema Museum last weekend, and apart from singing with my church for the Carol Service tomorrow, I’ve now actually got a bit of time off to reflect and gather my wits!
Actors-Rechoired – preparing for a concert
Some interesting developments for 2015 are starting to take shape, and I’ll let you know nearer the times.
– Wartime Women:the Khaki Cabaret at the Sarah Thorne Theatre, Broadstairs, Kent
– Wartime Women at The Rondo Theatre, Bath
Have a lovely and peaceful Christmas, and I wish you all the very best for 2015.
About Fiona Jane Weston
I am Fiona-Jane Weston and as well as being a performer myself (see website), I write reviews of and features on shows, mainly on the London cabaret and theatre scene.
I have worked in theatre for many years, but decided to embark on a new direction in cabaret in 2009, when I produced 20th Century Woman: The Compact Cabaret. Not wanting to neglect my love of spoken word, particularly drama and verse, I made the conscious decision to include these elements in the programme, as well as wonderful songs, to tell the story of women's changing status and preoccupations throughout the 20th Century and up to now.
I was invited to audition for the renowned Cabaret Conference at Yale, run by the late legendary Erv Raible, and that was thrilled to be one of only 26 accepted that year, where I was taught by the masters of the genre. Amanda McBroom (composer of the Bette Middler hit "The Rose" and the poignant "Errol Flynn"), Laurel Massé, original member of Manhattan Transfer, Sally Mayes, Tony Award nominees Sharon McNight and Tovah Feldshuh, and New York cabaret veteran Julie Wilson were all on the faculty. We were also treated to the musical direction of Alex Rybeck, Hubert Tex Arnold and the now late Paul Trueblood.
With the benefit of their insightful teaching and great encouragement, I took my show to The Duplex in New York, where I was delighted with the response.
Since then, I have produced Loving London: The Capital Cabaret, using the same format of songs, poetry and drama, in various London venues, including Leicester Square Theatre and The Crazy Coqs.
2014, the centenary of World War 1, saw the launch of Wartime Women: the Khaki Cabaret to a sellout house at St. James Theatre, London, garnering great notices, including from The Times and Musical Theatre Review. I have since been touring the show to Belgium and throughout the UK.
I hope these reviews and interviews entertain and educate at the same time, and if please do leave comments in the box. It's great to engage in a conversation about the Arts.