The idea of the Rose Bowl Awards was born in 1963 when the late Walter Hawkins, the Chairman of the Bristol Evening Post, and John Coe, a well-known journalist and drama critic, decided that it was time to recognise the huge talent often hidden away in the many amateur theatrical groups in the region. It was their inspiration and enthusiasm that ensured the competition’s fortunes and laid the foundation for the Rose Bowl Awards to grow and flourish throughout the years that followed.
Encouraged by the increasing interest from participating clubs and no longer able to rely on the sole support of the Evening Post, the Rose Bowl Committee was formed in 1991 to ensure the ongoing stability and continuation of the competition.
Today the Rose Bowl Awards ceremony is the major event of the year in the region for members of the amateur theatre. The evening combines the celebration of excellence, good food and entertainment with an opportunity to meet, exchange experiences and congratulate the winners in each category.
New in 2017 is an Award for Best Opera/Operetta (includes Gilbert & Sullivan productions), in addition to the 19 Awards presented in 2016:
The Chris Harris Award for Best Variety/Revue/Pantomime
First Corporate Coup de Theatre Award
Stage Electrics Award for Technical Achievement
Award for Best Supporting Actor (Drama)
Quartet Community Foundation Award for Best Supporting Actress (Drama)
Award for Best Supporting Actor (Musical)
Award for Best Supporting Actress (Musical)
Walter Hawkins Award for Creativity and Design
Manor Printing Services Award for Best Publicity Material
Pamela Southern Award for Best Actor in a youth production
Barbara Macrae Award for Best Actress in a youth production
Jean Fennell Award for Best Youth Production
Joan Hawkins Award for Best Shakespeare Production
Gregg Latchams Solicitors Award for Best Actor (Drama)
Eileen Hartly Hodder Award for Best Actress (Drama)
‘Bomber’ Harris Award for Best Actor (Musical)
Melanie Evans Award for Best Actress (Musical)
John Coe Award for Best Dramatic Production
The Bristol Evening Post Award for Best Musical Production
The Rose Bowl Awards are open to any amateur dramatic or operatic club in Bristol and surrounding area including Devon, Gloucestershire, Somerset and Wiltshire. The following companies entered in 2015/16:
|Amateur Players of Sherborne||Dorset|
|Bath Gilbert & Sullivan Society||Bath|
|Bath Light Operatic Group||Bath|
|Bath Operatic and Dramatic Society||Bath|
|Bath Unity Players||Bath|
|Bradfordians Dramatic Society||Trowbridge, Wilts|
|Bridgwater Operatic Society||Somerset|
|Bristol Amateur Operatic Society||Bristol|
|Bristol Amateur Operatic Society Youth||Bristol|
|Bristol Catholic Players||Bristol|
|Bristol Musical Comedy Club||Bristol|
|Bristol Musical Theatre||Bristol|
|Bristol Musical Youth Productions||Bristol|
|Centre Stage, Exmouth||Devon|
|Clevedon Light Opera Club||North Somerset|
|Clevedon Light Opera Club Juniors||North Somerset|
|Clevedon School||North Somerset|
|Cotswold Players||Stroud, Gloucestershire|
|Court Players||South Gloucestershire|
|Curtain Up Theatre School||Bath|
|Devizes Musical Theatre||Wiltshire|
|Dursley Operatic & Drama Society||Gloucestershire|
|Exeter Musical Society||Devon|
|Exit Stage Left||Bath|
|Exmouth Musical Theatre Company||Devon|
|Glastonbury & Street Musical Comedy Society||Somerset|
|Holt Dramatic Society||Wiltshire|
|Horfield Theatre Company||Bristol|
|Ilminster Entertainments Society||Somerset|
|Keynsham Light Opera Group||B&NES|
|Merlin Theatre Productions||Frome, Somerset|
|National Academy of Performing Arts, Bristol||Bristol|
|Northavon Youth Theatre Company||South Gloucestershire|
|Oldland Players||South Gloucestershire|
|Oppitts Youth Group, W-S-M Operatic Society||North Somerset|
|Pinstripe Productions||Bridgwater, Somerset|
|ProAct Theatre Company||Bristol|
|Sodbury Players||South Gloucestershire|
|Spare Room Theatre||Bath|
|St Alban’s Players||Bristol|
|St Mary’s Players||Bristol|
|St Ursula Players||Bristol|
|Sunshine Productions||Weston-super-Mare, North Somerset|
|TAOS Musical Theatre||Trowbridge, Wiltshire|
|Taunton Amateur Operatic Society||Somerset|
|The Trowbridge Players||Wiltshire|
|Thornbury Musical Theatre Group||South Gloucestershire|
|Timsbury Theatre Group||B&NES|
|Tiverton Junior Operatic Club||Devon|
|Weston-s-Mare Operatic Society||North Somerset|
|Winterbourne Players||South Gloucestershire|
|Yeovil Amateur Operatic Society||Somerset|
|Yeovil Youth Theatre||Somerset|
|Zenith Youth Theatre Company||Bath|
LINDA EVANS, ALAM
Linda trained at BOV Theatre School and the Guildhall School of Music. She was a founder and director of the Northavon Youth Theatre Co. Until her retirement, she was Head of Drama at Westonbirt School and she directs many plays and musicals. She was Artistic Director for the Thornbury Arts Festival over several years and continues to serve on the committee.
CAROLINE JOY BAHons, ATCL
Caroline has been involved in television, radio, theatre and performance for the past seventeen years, including touring with a theatre company. She is now a full-time Speech and Drama Teacher.
CLAIRE MORRIS BEd – Claire studied English and Drama at Leicester University. During this time she worked in a Parisian recording studio, her voice being used in the production of French/English learning material. She worked as a Drama teacher before moving to the South West where she has been an active member of three different amateur dramatic groups.
GERRY PARKER Drama Critic
A journalist and broadcaster with wide experience as an actor and director, Gerry has contributed theatre and music reviews to The Bristol Evening Post (now the Bristol Post), Western Daily Press and other journals since 1970. For many years he has written a weekly column on local theatre for the Bristol Post newspaper.
BARBARA SMITH LGSM LLAM ADB
Barbara is a Former Head of Performing Arts (FE & HE) at Weston College, Moderator for BTEC and also for Associate Boards Consortium. Currently Drama Director and Tutor in Voice and Acting Skills.
REBECCA THOMPSON BA Hons, LLAM (Hons)
Rebecca studied Drama and English at Bristol University. She then became a journalist and documentary researcher, working for the BBC Radio Drama Department and a regional magazine. She has since qualified as a Speech and Drama teacher and works in schools and higher education departments as a voice and presentation skills coach. She also runs her own speech and drama practice.
CLARE TOGHILL BA Hons, FAETC
After qualifying, Clare Toghill taught, directed and choreographed in the Far East, The Middle East and Europe for a number of years. She was responsible for creating theatre-based curricular programmes for schools in Asia and for staging large-scale productions in several countries. She was an in-house Choreographer for a Singapore-based touring Theatre Company during her time there. Clare still teaches Drama and English in schools, lectures in colleges and tutors privately.
Peter has served many years on the Amateur and Professional Stage. He trained at BOVTS and was taught to LAMDA standard at Dance Station. He toured with Vienna’s English Theatre (Austria and Italy) and ‘Sound & Fury’ (UK and Macedonia). His acting credits include Shakespeare at the Tobacco Factory, Theatre West, Yorkshire TV, BBC1, Panther Films, Hanover Pictures.
Caroline trained as a classical singer and pianist. She has performed opera, light opera, classical concerts and musicals for more than twenty years with both amateur and professional ensembles. In later life, Caroline has worked as a vocal coach and a musical director for numerous productions in the South West. She also conducts two mixed choirs and a school orchestra, as well as playing the piano as an accompanist across the region and the cello for Frome Symphony Orchestra. Caroline has a particular interest in lighting, sound and stage management aspects of performance.
We are currently recruiting additional adjudicators and would particularly like to hear from anyone interested in the role who is based in South Somerset or Devon. Please get in touch via the contact form on this website.
The Rose Bowl Awards are managed by a Committee comprising family representatives of the founders, Walter Hawkins and John Coe, and other officers and committee members.
President: Joan Hawkins
Chairman: Gerry Parker
Secretary: Veronica Northam
Treasurer: Peter Stoppard OBE
Richard Jones (Chair of the Awards Ceremony Sub-Committee)
Helen Moss OBE