In 1954 a group of teachers got together to stage a production of ‘Twelfth night’, by William Shakespeare. Soon more people, other than teachers, became interested. Regular evenings were set by for rehearsals at the old ‘Courts’, school and so ‘Courts Players’ were formed.
Time went by and in 1965 the group joined forces with the ‘Thurrock Players’,
Thus creating ‘Thurrock Courts Players’.
From 1954, Thirty-Three productions were staged at Courts school until
in 1971, £110,000 had been spent on a central library and theatre complex in Orsett road, Grays. This was named the ‘Thameside theatre’. This gave excellent opportunities to many performing societies, including Thurrock Courts Players.
The first production by Thurrock Courts Players at Thameside theatre was called ‘Loot’, a comedy by Joe Orton. Since then many different styles of production have been staged, including musicals, dramas, thrillers, comedies and farce. It cannot be said that the Players have not set out to please a wide range of audience.
Now, as members of the ‘Thurrock Arts Council’, they exist as a strong and enthusiastic society of about 40 people. Their commitment to high standards goes beyond acting. Each member takes on other tasks such as props, prompt, costumes, scenery and publicity.
In recent years they have tested themselves against the best. They have entered festivals in Woking, Welwyn, Waltham Forest, Havering, Southend, Felixstowe and Thurrock. Many members are nominated for best actor/supporting actor and they have won numerous trophies. AT the NODA awards 2016, the company is delighted to have won best play in region 10 as well as best production, beating every other group in the eastern region.