The Children’s Theatre Company (the CTC) was established in the summer of 2009 by local performing artiste Bridie Rowe. Based in Ipswich, Suffolk the CTC is an innovative, vibrant theatre company where children of all ages can experience all aspects of performance.
The company started out by producing small scale musical productions in local school halls before joining the New Wolsey Theatre’s Open Season in 2011. The CTC have now staged seven highly successful musicals at the New Wolsey including a critically acclaimed sell-out run of Les Miserablés in 2013 for which they received their first NODA award for ‘Best Performance by Youth’ (awarded to Maia Elsey, Eponine), Grease,the No. 1 Party Musical – another sell out production and another NODA award for ‘Best Performance by Youth’ (Chloe Brown, Rizzo) and ‘Best Youth Production’, the musical sensation, West Side Story selling out six performances and yet another nomination for NODA’s ‘Best Youth Production’ (see below for which other CTC production won this award!), the fun packed, high energy Legally Blonde, The Musical in 2015 (only one of two companies in Suffolk to have been selected to stage this brand new release in 2016, the CTC relished the opportunity with rave reviews and ‘snaps’ for all!) The summer of 2017 saw the CTC return to the Open Season once with a classic from the Golden Age of the Musical Movie, Seven Brides for Seven Brothers.
The company also staged the family favourite, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat at The Apex, Bury St. Edmunds at the end of 2015 marking the CTC’s move to stage three large scale productions a year and winner of NODA’s ‘Best Youth Production’ 2015 just ahead of West Side Story! The CTC then dazzled audiences at the Apex once more returning with the musical phenomenon CATS! in 2016 – ‘some of the finest talent in the country, let alone the county’, ‘…the best am-dram musical of 2016’ among some of the fantastic reviews! Most recently, the CTC wowed sold out crowds at The Apex with their version of the smash hit musical ‘HAIRSPRAY’ with more wonderful reviews – :Question: When is an am-dram musical as good as a professional production? Answer: when it’s performed by the CTC!”
September 2011 also saw the launch of weekly classes offering quality training in the art of Musical Theatre, The CTC Academy which now meets on Wednesday evenings at the Ipswich Town Hall. The CTC Academy caters for three age groups: Theatre Tots (3-5 years), Theatre Tribes (6-11 years) and Theatre Teens (12+ years) working towards a bi-annual showcase to be performed at Dance East in the summer term.
In 2013, the CTC made their debut at the Seckford Theatre, Woodbridge with a production of Disney’s Cinderella Kids, featuring the younger members of the company. This is now an annual spectacle with two sell out performances of the magical under the sea adventure The Little Mermaid Jr in 2014 followed by Aladdin Jr (2015) and Beauty and the Beast JR (2016). Easter 2017 saw the CTC take their junior production to Dance East for the first time giving the younger members of the company the opportunity to stage a non Disney production with ANNIE JR. The junior company are set to send audiences soaring over the rainbow as they return to the Seckford Theatre with ‘The Wizard of Oz‘ this February half-term – follow us down the yellow brick road on this magical adventure and book your tickets today!
Alongside classes and productions, Bridie and her team are also busy entertaining children with fun-filled, adventure packed themed birthday parties and have recently launched the CTC Agency to provide a platform for local children and young adults to work professionally.
Over recent years the company has gone from strength to strength and earned its reputation as one of the finest amateur youth companies in East Anglia.