May 2013



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May Newsletter

The Walking Theatre Company

Another month has flown by here at The Walking Theatre Company, and this May, TWTC went GLOBAL, with the creation of the first ever Canadian Walking Youth Theatre in Manitoba! Our Murder Mystery teams were also travelling a lot this month, and we had some fantastic outdoor theatre performances in both rain, and sunshine! So sit back, relax, and relive all the TWTC May madness!

Tickets for “Treasure Island” at Loch Lomond Shores are available by booking here!
Murder, Mystery, and a whole lot of fun!

There were mysterious murders happening all over Scotland this May, from Oban to Dunoon, Elgin to Nethy Bridge, Stirling to Inverness! A mixture of fun-filled celebrations, team-building, and even a wedding!

For more information on our wickedly wonderful Murder Mystery parties and events, visit our website:

Contact us for more details on our deadly addictive events!
Wicked Weekends

Our Murder Mystery events are perfect for a night out, or a weekend away! Isn’t it about time you spoiled yourself, and indulged in a weekend of fun, frolics, and a little bit of mystery!

Murder Mystery weekends are available at  The Argyll Hotel, Dunoon, and The Leapark Hotel, Grangemouth, with different themes taking place throughout the year!

For more information on when our next murderous weekend adventures will be taking place, and how you can book your place, get in touch with your chosen hotel!

The Argyll Hotel, Dunoon –

01369 702 059

The Leapark, Grangemouth –

01324 486 733

Above: Our very first Canadian Walking Youth Theatre in Powerview, Manitoba!

Below: Ladies in waiting – performance shot from “Selkirk’s New Nation”

Drama for Learning

TWTC have amassed a sat experience in workshop, corporate team-building, and forum theatre events, as well as our very own unique outdoor walking theatre!

This month, two of our talented team, Karen Bartke and Andy Paterson, travelled North to the Black Isle, to lead a day of training through forum theatre for a group undertaking the ‘Growth Through Leadership Course through the Social Enterprise Academy (SEA).

As a fellow Social Enterprise, TWTC were thrilled to be apart of SEA’s Brora programme, which aims to develop delegates skills in self-leadership, motivation, emotional intelligence, communication, and team work.

Karen and Andy hosted a day of workshops, which saw the group connecting with drama and performance as a diverse way of learning and confidence building. Forum theatre allows individuals to really get involved with performance, and encourages people to use and develop skills they were previously unaware they had.

TWTC proudly advocate the performing arts as a learning tool, and would like to thank the Social Enterprise Academy for inviting us to be a part of such a successful programme!

For more information on the Social Enterprise Academy, please visit:

When we walked (back!) to Wilsontown.

Rebecca Bloom and Allan Scott-Douglas from TWTC spent two days with the pupils of Forth Primary, on a variety of workshops linked to the history and heritage of Wilsontown Ironworks, which is now a Forestry Commission Scotland site. The workshops were also in preparation for a performance of TWTC’s original work “The Grass Beneath Our Feet”, on Saturday 11th of May. The wind and rain made a very impressive appearance, but that didn’t stop our adventurous youth who ignored the weather, and joined in as TWTC took them back in time to the days when Wilsontown was an industrious coal mining site.

‘The Grass Beneath Our Feet’, written by TWTC’s Artistic Director Sadie Dixon-Spain, is a real blast from the past. Wilsontown Iron Furnace was one of Scotland’s most significant industrial landmarks, a roaring furnace, coalmine and railway, a hub of thriving industry at the forefront of Scotland’s Industrial revolution. The site attracted folk from all over the United Kingdom to work, providing housing, shops and a thriving integrated township grew up about the furnace, providing employment and security for thousands.

TWTC were delighted to be invited back to Wilsontown, and look forward to further performances at this historic location in the future!

‘Love on the Loch’ 

This year see the realease of a new film “Effie“, written by Emma Thompson, and starring Dakota Fanning and Greg Wise, and we at TWTC were delighted to be commissioned by the Woodland Trust at Glen Finglas,  to develop a play celebrating not just the films release, but ‘the place where it really all happened’.

The Woodland Trust is the UK’s leading woodland conservation charity, encouraging the public to engage with preserving our natural forest land throughout the country. Glen Finglas is an estate in the Trossachs, and covers an impressive area of 10,000 acres. The beautiful Scottish scenery and rich history bring visitors to the Estate each year.

 “Love on the Loch”, written by TWTC’s Artistic Director, Sadie Dixon-Spain, is a divine tribute to the love triangle of the Romantics, Millais & Ruskin and the lovely ‘Effie Gray’. As you walk along the edge of the loch, be prepared to step back in time to discover the passions that ran deep, under starched collars and whale-boned corsets, see what happens when a young woman makes a momentous decision to leave her husband and run away with a painter!

The film, has already caused controversy when allegations of plagiarism, halted the release date, however with the high Court ruling in favour of Miss Thompson, we can be sure that our play will cause just as much of a rumpus on the shores of the Loch!

For more information on “Effie’s Weekend”, click here!
This month in the Actors Spotlight, we have the fabulous Ms. Ruth Tapp! Here we can see Ruth at Dunollie, performing as part of TWTC’s original piece “The Hidden Jewel”.
That’s all folks!

Make sure you check out our website and social networks for updates on where we are, what we’re doing, and how you can get involved!

We look forward to seeing you at our performances throughout 2013!

Until next month!

Best wishes,

The Walking Theatre Company
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A Wiz Around Loch Lomond!

The Munchkins were out in force at Loch Lomond Shores on the afternoon of Sunday, 12th of May, for a very special ‘Wiz Around Oz’ Walking Theatre Company extravangaza!

Our very own Dorothy, fit with her red welly boots, led an audience of over 140 around the bonnie, bonnie banks of Loch Lomond, while she searched for her beloved Toto! Along the way, we even met the Great Wiz…a wonderful chap, even though he is missing a few marbles…

A very big thanks to our fantastic audience, who were full of enthusiasm throughout the walk, joining in as our team weaved in and out the crowd! We even had some ‘mini-Dorothy’s’ who came to help search for Toto!

The Walking Theatre Company will be returning to Loch Lomond Shores on Sunday 23rd of June, performing ‘Treasure Island’. Tickets available now!

Canadian Walking Youth Theatre

After three weeks in Canada, Artistic Director Sadie Dixon-Spain, and core company actor Liam Calgie, have returned from their adventure, which saw TWTC create the Canadian Walking Youth Theatre, and perform on international soil!

Sadie & Liam were working with pupils from Powerview Ècole School, and brought to life specially commissioned work “Selkirk’s New Nation”, written by Sadie herself!

The Canadian Walking Youth Theatre is made up of a diverse group of pupils from Powerview School in Manitoba, descended from Canadian First Nations, (Cree, Ojibwe, Mètis) and French, Irish and Scottish settlers.

Our amazing story started when a Powerview School teacher, Nancy Kovachik, visited Scotland in 2010. She came here to take part in a Fiddle workshop, hosted by Mari Campbell, on the beautiful western Isle of Lismore. Quite literally as she got of the boat, she was whisked along to join in a Walking Theatre Company show: TWTC working with their first youth team ‘The Lismore Walking Youth Theatre’ were doing what they do best that day: entertain!

“Selkirk’s New Nation” was born! The play written by Sadie Dixon-Spain, shaped by the youth teams own heritage and cultural references, explores the impact of Lord Selkirk’s ‘Scots’ Settlers upon Canadian history and the legacy shared by the Canadians and the Scots today.

Politically, with the Mètis people this year being granted their own ‘land rights’ by the Canadian Government, after an ignored treaty of 1870, the story has held a special connection for many of our audience and the Scots Diaspora. For 100’s of years the Mètis people have been a ‘hidden people’ without land, or identity, lost like the generations of cleared Highlanders, however, like Selkirk’s people, they have found their ‘own way’.

Nancy’s extraordinary vision was so much more than the creation of a play, and a transatlantic collaboration. The inspirational work of Staff, pupils and the community of Powerview has led to over $100,000 Canadian, being raised to enable their Youth Team to come to Scotland in June and perform the play at Holyrood and on the Isle of Lismore in June 2013, thus beginning their own Scottish adventure. This visit is very poignant to many of the youth group who feel they will be visiting their ‘home from home’ for the very first time and represents a lifetime opportunity, and to perform at The Scottish Parliament with the support of Scottish MSP’s is an extraordinary boost. The event has been kindly sponsored by Mr. Mike MacKenzie MSP.

The event at The Scottish Parliament will take place on the evening of Wednesday 26th of June, is by invitation only. Please contact Alana at TWTC HQ for guest list enquiries.

On Sunday 30th of June, TWTC and CWYT will be performing on the beautiful Isle of Lismore. This event is open to the public, and is being supported by The Lismore Gaelic Heritage Centre.

For more information on the upcoming performances of “Selkirk’s New Nation”, please email or call 01369 820 115.

Feeling “Braw”? Math fhèin!

The Walking Theatre Company were thrilled to perform for the first time on the beautiful western isle of Islay on the evening of Wednesday 15th of May. TWTC were invitied by the lovely people at Ionad Chalium Chile Ìle (The Columba Centre) to perform original work, ‘BRAW: An aw’fy ‘Brave’ adventure!’.

King Murdach had lost his daughter, the Kingdom had lost a hero, and the Celts were on the rampage…again! Thanks to the help of the Picties, Dotties, and Bretton-Butter tribes of Islay, order was restored, as TWTC took the audience back intime to the madcap world of the Ancient Celtic Clans!

We had a fabulous time on Islay, and a very big thank you goes to Ionad Chalium Chile Ìle for being such welcoming hosts! We look forward to our next adventure across the water to Islay!

Actors Spotlight

This month, one of our fantastic actresses, Ruth Tapp, is in our Actors Spotlight, as she tells us what life is like at TWTC!

Q1. If you could sum up TWTC in three words, what would they be?

RT: “Open Air Fun!”

Q2. Why do you like being a TWTC actor?

RT: “There is nothing quite like jumping out from behind a tree as some larger than life character – its so lovely to be so close and interacting with the audience. The beautiful places I have performed in make it special too.”

Q3. What is your favourite role to play, and why?

RT: “I’ve played Dorothy in The Wizard Of Oz a few times which I loved since I’ve always been a fan of the film.”

Q4. If you could perform with TWTC in any location, where would it be and why?

RT: “I’d love to do a TWTC company performance somewhere really hot with no midges! So maybe Australia somewhere? Or actually it would be really interesting to take a TWTC show to a massive urban city like London or New York too… It would fascinating to see how the formula would work in those places.”

Q5: To date, what has been your most favourite moment at TWTC?

RT: “It’s a few years ago now but I think The Hidden Jewel at Dunollie was special. Such a great venue and as part of Homecoming 2009 we had so many people from all over come to see it. It was a really great experience – and seven nights in a row with no rain in Scotland is pretty good going too!!”

Thanks Ruth! In spirit of Dorothy, “there’s no place like TWTC!”

Upcoming Shows and Events

No matter what the Scottish Summer has in store fore us, here at TWTC we are preparing for some Summertime fun and frolics! Here’s what’s in store:

June 2013

1st June – ‘Highland Wedding’ – Murder Mystery: Eight Acres Hotel, Elgin

2nd June – ‘Love on the Loch’ as part of ‘Effie’s Weekend’: The Woodland Trust, Glen Finglas

5th June – ‘Glen of the Red River’ – All Our Stories Project, Workshop: Kilmodan Primary School, Glendaruel

8th June – ‘Live and Let Spy’ – Private Murder Mystery: Dundee

14th – 16th June – ‘Brambly Hedge’ – Workshops and Performance: Gordon Castle, Fochabers

16th June – ‘Talav Dunadd: The Land Beneath Kings’ – Iona 2013 Celebrations: Dunadd

21st June – ‘Conference of the Faeries’ – Laggan Forest Trust, Laggan

22nd June – ‘Puck the Eco Sprite’s Trail’ – MidSummer Fair: Christ Church, Lochgilphead

22nd June – ‘Spying Tonight’ – Murder Mystery: The Leapark Hotel, Grangemouth

23rd June – ‘Macbeth’ – MidSummer Fair: Christ Church, Lochgilphead

23rd June – ‘Treasure Island’ – Loch Lomond Shores

26th June – ‘Selkirk’s New Nation’ ­– Performed with the Canadian Walking Youth Theatre: The Scottish Parliament, Edinburgh

28th – 29th June – ‘Gangster’ – Murder Mystery Weekend: The Argyll Hotel, Dunoon

30th June – ‘Selkirk’s New Nation’ – Performed with the Canadian Walking Youth Theatre: Isle of Lismore, Argyll

We look forward to seeing you there!

If you would like to book TWTC, email us and we would be happy to discuss your event!
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The Walking Theatre Company, Dunans House, Glendaruel, Argyll, PA22 3AD

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