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Bayside and Westside Drama Group win top prize in Kent festival

Bayside and Westside Drama Group returned to Gibraltar this week having dominated the awards with their productions of “The Trial” and “In Jesus’ Name” at the Duncan Rand Youth One-Act Play Festival. This is the first time that the group has won the Festival, having come second on three occasions. “The Trial” won Best Play and “In Jesus’ Name” came third in the same category.

The festival was held at the Medway Little Theatre in Rochester (Kent).

The group also won a large number of individual awards.

Billy Snell, who played the lead role of Joseph K in “The Trial”, won Best Actor, replicating his achievement at the last Gibraltar Drama Festival.

Chris Ablitt and Sam Bush, who also won awards at the local festival last March, also found themselves collecting trophies for Best Supporting Actor and Best Actor in a Minor Role respectively for the performances as Frank Koziel in “In Jesus’ Name” and Block in “The Trial”.

For her part, Sarah Reilly won Best Actress in a Minor Role for her performance as the mother in “In Jesus’ Name”.

The group’s success was not just limited to its onstage performance. Emma Cruz, the group’s chief technician, was recognised as the Festival’s Best Sound Operator, while the production’s backstage crews, led by Mohammed Acharki and Sergi Traverso, won Best Backstage Team.

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“This was a resounding success for the local group, whose competition included the resident youth company at Medway Little Theatre. It brings their running total to an impressive forty awards over the last four years, both in Gibraltar and in the UK,” said its director Julian Felices.

“This was a particularly poignant experience for the group as many of its members will be finishing school soon and will be leaving the group after many years of dedicated service.”


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