Theatre restaurant back

All go . . . Rehearsals for Be Our Guest are in full swing, and the cast are having fun. PHOTO: SUPPLIED

The curtains have opened on theatre restaurant in Waimate after a five-year intermission.

Director Helen Horsnell has been simultaneously unpacking into her new home — despite moving to the area at the end of January — and holding rehearsals for the show.

She said she and her husband had moved from Dunedin into their house only eight days before heading off in a caravan to travel the country for two months.

The trip had meant she was left to hold auditions over the phone, which had been a new experience for her.

She had lived in Dunedin for 25 years but for the past two years had been travelling regularly to Waimate to direct plays, she said.

The commute had been hard on her physically, and the petrol bill was huge.

There had been only a few times when she had managed to car share.

She had family in Waimate, so — cautious about driving around at night-time in winter — she had had some sleep-overs.

She loved the supportive nature of the community, she said. ‘‘Here people love to see their local people on the stage.’’ Four vets were taking part in the theatre in some way, she said.

The theatre restaurant offered a variety of dancing, singing and comedy and a country-style three-course meal would be served.

Mrs Horsnell promised audiences would be ‘‘thoroughly entertained’’.

Performances are due to start in late June.