A String of Pearls

Devised by Jane McKell

Directed by Jamie Chapman 

Cast; Annette Woolven, Jane McKell and Giselle Summers

Design: The Cast 

Music: Ken Allen & period archive 

Toured spring and summer 2005

A String of Pearls is an evocative human drama with music as a beating heart, a celebration of World War II through the eyes of women; the second in a series of two productions, this time commemorating and celebrating VE Day.

This production toured from the end of April until late June 2005 in Dorset, Somerset and Wiltshire. It is an original project, the culmination of 18 month’s research and collation by As One Productions using more than 200 original WWII memories – sent from all over the UK – the stimulus for a story of three sisters with very different lives and goals. The sisters go on a journey of discovery whilst packing up their deceased Grandma’s possessions. What they learn about themselves is more than matched by what they learn about Grandma.

A thrilling string of stories about all kinds of women; the trailblazers, the homemakers, the brave, the frightened, the young innocents and the worldly-wise with one common denominator; an indomitable spirit… and Grandma certainly has the last word. This production sees the very experienced, singer/actress Giselle Summers joining as performer/joint musical director/vocal arranger.

In 2004, In the Mood was a multi-media tribute to D Day featuring Glenn Miller, Andrew’s Sisters, Vera Lynn and Judy Garland, linked by living memories from survivors of turbulent days. Devised by As One out of an original idea from Artistic Director, Jane McKell, In the Mood – with its rich three part harmonies, nostalgia and gritty story telling – has proved a big hit; touring until November 04, a springboard to As One’s new Spring 05 show. The company was joined by choreographer/performer, Antoinette Woolven.

AsOne Theatre Company have been touring the South West with performances ranging from Fantasy and Freedom, a crafted compilation West End and Broadway Musicals show to their original musical revue, Circle of Life, a wry look at life in word, picture and song. Lorraine Rowan was performer/joint musical director.