AND THE WINNER IS…
Local actor Jack Herbert chats to Lauren Molyneux about his recent award win and his upcoming projects. Photography: Gilly Grist
Following a fantastic reception of their adaptation of The Hound of the Baskervilles, which showed in Colne’s Little Theatre last year, Burnley-born Jack Herbert and his fellow cast members are celebrating their recent Association of Community Theatre Award win.
“We are over the moon with the fact that we won an ACT award for Best Comedy Trio,” says Jack. “With it being a play designed for a three-person cast, we were met with a few challenges when we took on the script, but overall it was so much fun. We each had to play loads of different parts, which added to the comedy in itself. But the beauty of that particular adaptation was that there was so much room for ad-libbing, improvisation and experimentation.
“We went for a comedy in the style of Monty Python/Reeves and Mortimer, and it worked really well. We spent the whole show buzzing about the stage doing some rapid costume changes and playing every role under the sun, and where there were gaps in the script we could fill it with comedy and spectacle, like John Watson playing flamenco guitar. I loved working on that production – it was so open to interpretation.”
This is the second ACT award for Jack, who, along with his fiancée, won the award for Best Actor/Actress in a 2016 production of Kissing Sid James.
“Awards from the Association of Community Theatre are highly competitive, so receiving another is amazing, really,” says Jack. “For us, it was just three mates who wanted to get together, put on a good show and have a laugh. But at an amateur level, it’s just really nice to have your work or performances recognised. So many shows get performed under this bracket – it’s an honour to even be nominated, let alone to win!”
His latest project sees Jack as Musical Director for a production of Jesus Christ Superstar, which will be showing at St Mary’s Art Centre in Clitheroe in February.
“I had previously been the Musical Director for a production of Rent, and was actually nominated for a Best Musical Director award,” says Jack. “I suppose the team liked what I did with that production and decided to offer me the same position for Jesus Christ Superstar.”
“I’m really excited about this show. It’s one of my all-time favourite musicals and, for me, it is the show with the best music in musical theatre. We have a cast of about 30 members, all ranging in age from 16 to 60 plus, and they are all great actors, hard-working and dedicated. We’ve been rehearsing hard since October, and we can’t wait to put on a good show for everyone in February!”
Looking to the year ahead, Jack has a number of different projects on the go and is excited to start gaining some new experience.
“I’m looking forward to what this year will bring. I’m also looking forward to doing a lot more work on the music side of things. I enjoy writing and producing music, so I think it will be nice to be able to spend more time behind the piano!”
Jesus Christ Superstar will be shown at St Mary’s Centre in Clitheroe from 16th-23rd February 2019