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Much ado about oddsox

PUBLISHED: 10:36 29 May 2008 | UPDATED: 13:16 11 August 2010

WHEN you find yourself with nothing much to do this summer - don t worry - because Oddsocks Theatre are bringing you Much Ado about Nothing . This show of travelling minstrels has been on the road for 15 years setting up their Elizabethan wagon in public

WHEN you find yourself with nothing much to do this summer - don't worry - because Oddsocks Theatre are bringing you "Much Ado about Nothing".

This show of travelling minstrels has been on the road for 15 years setting up their Elizabethan wagon in public places to perform.

And they are returning to Valentines Park, Ilford with this Shakespearian classic for one night on Sunday June 22.

The POST spoke to the company's producer, Elli Mackenzie, about the show and her fond memories of the Essex area.

Elli said: "We are based up in Derby now but I love coming back to the Ilford area because it's where we started off.

"The company was in Walthamstow and one of our first gigs was in Southend.

"Back then I was on stage and we were a clown theatre company - that's where we got the name Oddsocks.

"We had to go and buy a load of cheap stuff for costumes and we all ended up wearing different socks."

In the early days Elli and her company of players used to charge half price to anyone who came to their shows wearing odd socks.

Elli said: "We had to stop doing that because we weren't making enough money.

"People would come and see the sign and then swap socks with the person next to them but it was a great way to get people involved."

Touring companies of actors were very common back in the 1500's and Oddsocks want to keep the old English tradition alive.

Elli said: "It really is a great day out and a very British thing but more and more different ethnicities are starting to come along.

"One of the great things about Redbridge is that it's so diverse.

"People come despite the weather and bring their deckchairs and picnics for a lovely evening of entertainment."

She added: "But do remember to take coats and umbrellas just in case - you know our great British summer!"

Oddsocks was founded in 1993 by Elli and her husband Andy and have performed everywhere from Scotland to the Channel Islands to the middle of a roundabout in Whitehaven.

They have a base of incredibly loyal fans who come back year after year bringing their children and grandchildren to join the fun.

Speaking about this production, Elli said: "Much Ado about Nothing is a fantastic play.

"It's got true love, good verses evil and a series of hilarious mishaps so it's the perfect way to spend a summer evening."

To book tickets call 020 8708 3044 prices range from £5 to £7, and a family ticket is £22 for 2 adults and 2 children.

The performance starts at 6pm in Valentines Park, Ilford with parking available at Melbourne Field.


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