Hertford Theatre Week is a six-night drama festival with a different production every night in the heart of Hertford. Teams travel from all over the country to compete for trophies and the chance to compete in the NDFA All Winners Festival. 2018 sees the 57th Hertford Theatre Week and brings the number of productions to 336. The Festival was instigated when a small committee from Hertford Dramatic & Operatic Society, investigating the possibilities of further stimulating amateur drama, invited neighbouring Societies and Drama Groups to perform one of their own productions under festival conditions. With rules agreed and sufficient support promised to ensure a full week's programme of six different plays, 1962 saw the first Hertford Theatre Week. Sponsorship of the first ten years was provided by the directors of the Hertfordshire Mercury and County Press, the publishers of our local newspaper and supporters of local drama. Since 1972 Hertford Dramatic & Operatic Society has not only been the hosts and organisers but also the main sponsors.
In recent years the Festival has been completely self-financing and, unlike many full-length play festivals which draw sponsorship from their local authority or commercial organisations, our only revenue comes from the Box Office sales.
The Festival is run by a team of unpaid volunteers, many of who give up some of their annual holiday to work on the competition and whose only reward is their love of theatre and the satisfaction of being involved in what is now recognised as one of the leading full-length drama competitions in the country.
We are proud to say that in 2015, yet again, Hertford Theatre Week provided the winner of the NDFA British All-Winners Drama Festival, held at the Rhoda McGaw Theatre in Woking, Surrey, and in 2016 the Hertford Theatre Week team were proud to host this national event at Hertford Theatre. 2017 saw Hertford Theatre Week provide the runner-up at the All-Winners Drama Festival held in Barnsley.
The 2018 programme will be available early in 2018
If you are someone who enjoys competitive theatre, why not also visit the Welwyn Drama Festival for one-act plays or the Welwyn Youth Drama Festival, for young teams, also presenting one-act plays.
Both are held at The Barn Theatre in Welwyn Garden City.
Mike Kaiser spent over thirty years teaching English and Drama. Originally from Manchester, he has lived for over forty years in Shropshire where he was Head of English and Theatre Studies at the Sixth Form College in Telford.Read more »