Successful group offers young performers the chance to shine

Horsham amateur dramatic group HAODS is making sure that the next generation come through with the launch of Young HAODS.

HAODS House in the Broadbridge Heath Leisure Centre is the weekly venue, offering young people the chance to sing, dance and perform and to learn basic theatrical disciplines – every Wednesday evening from 6.30-7.30pm (for ages seven-11) and from 7.30-8.30pm (for ages 12 and up).

Mandy Hodge is in charge and is delighted with the success so far.

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Mandy runs a similar group in Hampshire. She moved to Horsham last April and continues with her Hampshire commitments, but now she has added Horsham to endeavours.

“Through a friends of a friend of a friend, it was recommended that I might do something to help young people in Horsham. I was approached by HAODS who have got this fantastic facility but also need to put money in their bank account.”

HAODS were keen to keep the name HAODS in there somewhere, and so Young HAODS was born.

The initial idea was that it would give HAODS a group of youngsters to draw on when productions required it, and that will probably happen when they stage The Sound Of Music next year.

“That will be the first big thing for the children.”

But already the youngsters are asking Mandy whether they might stage their own production one day.

The answer is yes, but first for reasons of getting bums on seats, they need to expand.

“We just need to build up the numbers before I can say when and where we will put something on,” Mandy said.

At the moment, Mandy has got 26 young performers. For their own productions to become viable, she believes they need to reach 80-100 – a level which will ensure sufficient audiences to offset the costs of hiring a venue.

“It is open to anybody of any ability,” Mandy stresses. “We don’t audition.”

For more details, get in touch with Mandy by emailing her on [email protected]