Basingstoke Gang Show is recognised as the longest running and bestselling amateur show in Basingstoke. It was first established in 1980 and the 28th show is currently in rehearsals. Over the 43 years 2,000 young people in Scouting and Guiding have experienced being part of a large theatre production, gained confidence, built skills for life and made friendships. In 1984 the Basingstoke Gang Show were awarded the coveted ‘Red Scarf’ and Gang Show emblem which is only awarded to Gang Shows that perform to a consistently high standard.
Basingstoke Gang Show Chairman, Steve Edney, welcomed the Mayor, Mayoress, Lady Louisa Portal, Chris Horton from NODA and over 50 current and past cast members, volunteers, and parents to the event on Tuesday 25 October. He then presented the Mayor with the award-winning and coveted Basingstoke Gang Show red scarf and 2020 woggle for the borough of Basingstoke and Deane.
Steve Edney said: “Tonight is a joyful celebration, where we come together to honour our heritage, acknowledge the positive impact in our community and have recognition of the talent within our community. Basingstoke Gang Show is recognised as the best compilation (variety) show in the South of England. With Kirsty Thomas as an award-winning producer and an outstanding cast of almost seventy 8–20-year-olds”.
Chris Horton recalled her memories saying “I vividly remember watching the show in February 2020, particularly the opening number which dramatized a life where music was banned, and theatres were closed. Little did we know just four weeks later we would enter a national lockdown!” Chris made another special mention: “The volunteers who support the show, from the amazing on-stage set and costumes, sound and lighting to the parents who chaperone and help with line learning!”
The Mayor, Cllr Paul Miller, shared his memories “I was proud to be a Scout as a child,” and shared a personal story: “My father made me a wooden woggle with a woodpecker, as I was in the Woodpecker patrol, which I enjoyed wearing as part of my uniform. Later I joined Cadets before joining the RAF. As an adult I was also a member of the Scouting Fellowship taking the opportunity to volunteer and support and inspire local Air Scouts. One of my jobs was looking after the ‘Tuck Shop’, I even camped and slept next to the Tuck Shop!”. The Mayor and Mayoress invited members cast members ‘backstage’ to The Mayors Parlour, saying “we are looking forward to coming to see Basingstoke Gang Show in February 2023.”
Following the formal presentation, the ‘gang’ enjoyed cake and refreshments whilst taking a look at the Basingstoke Gang Show archive with photos, programmes and memorabilia from the 43-year history.
Basingstoke Gang Show has performed to over 80,000 audience members since 1980. Join us for our 28th show in February 2023. Tickets are now on sale: www.anvilarts.org.uk/whats-on/event/basingstoke-gang-show
News provided by Basingstoke Gang Show, October 2022