A talented St Thomas More School pupil and playwright is celebrating after being invited to stage a poignant show, written after she was inspired by the invaluable work of St Luke’s (Cheshire) Hospice, for the public in aid of the charity.
Emma Rogerson, aged 15, who lives in Delamere Road, Nantwich, has been taken aback by the huge success of her play, We Were There, which tackles the difficult and sensitive subject of family bereavement from the view of two teenage sisters and raises awareness on the hospice’s Phoenix Project Bereavement Support Group for children.
Written during the summer school holidays after she was inspired by a school visit from St Luke’s (Cheshire) Hospice, Emma’s play has grown from an inspired idea to a full stage production with a cast of 16 actors and two musicians.
Encouraged by the acclaimed Performing Arts department at the Dane Bank Avenue school in Crewe, writer and director Emma led the newly-founded ‘Tommy’s Theatre Group’ to a standing ovation from an audience of family and friends after its anticipated one-off showing at the school, held in aid of the hospice.
Word then spread of the play’s inspiring message and the excellent quality of the production, culminating in an invitation from the respected Nantwich Players’ amateur dramatic group to stage the show at the Pillory Street theatre for the public on Saturday, 4 January.
Emma’s company will perform a matinee at 2.30pm and an evening show at 7.30pm. The 7.30pm show is already sold out however tickets for the 2.30pm performance are still available.
An excited Emma explains:
“We Were There tells the story of two sisters growing up in a high school like any other teenagers.
“However their seemingly perfect life is shattered when they discover their mother Cathy is getting sicker and sicker before going into a hospice for treatment.
“As their father Anthony struggles to cope and their lives begin to disintegrate, Lucy and Lily have to find salvation and become stronger.
“When St Luke’s visited our school earlier this year, I was really moved by the wonderful work of the Phoenix Project Bereavement Support Group for children as I didn’t know such a vital service existed and neither did my friends.
“The response to the play has been amazing and I just hope it will raise awareness of the invaluable support St Luke’s offers in the community.
“Of course, all the proceeds from tickets will go directly to St Luke’s.”
Emma is now putting the final touches to the show ahead of its theatre debut.
“Drama is my passion and I’m honoured that people have enjoyed the play. While I wrote it, I need to say thank you to all my friends who have come together to form the cast, our musicians and the Performing Arts department at school who have been incredibly supportive.”
Emma’s liaison at St Luke’s Carol Smith says all the staff and patients at the hospice have been inspired by Emma’s kind-hearted and generous support.
“Emma is a truly amazing example of our inspiring network of supporters across Cheshire and it is incredibly heart-warming to think that a school visit has inspired her to write such an emotional and poignant piece of work.
“I would encourage people of all ages to book their tickets to see Emma’s amazing play, all the proceeds from which will go straight towards the hospice’s patient care and wider work in the community such as the Phoenix Project Bereavement Support Group for children.”
Tickets for the 2.30pm performance of We Were There are priced £5 for adults and £2.50 for children aged 16 and under.
Tickets are available from St Luke’s Swirly Whirlys shop in Pillory Street, Nantwich or from 01270 626088.