The historic motto of the association is: Come along and have a go! and the association is very much looking forward to producing new projects in the coming years, providing opportunities for new and established members to share and enjoy music and theatre in English.
Come Along and...
have a go!
This lively and active association was launched at the Pibrac Forum des Association in 2009. Its original core members were Sandra Goodall, Elisabeth Roche, Kate Goddard, Sandra Zeilig and Kathy Southwell. The association TMA 31 was created with the aim of taking English into the community, providing opportunities for members of all levels and cultures to perform music and theatre in English.
TMA 31 was launched with four English speaking activities: a Children’s Theatre Group run by Kate Goddard, Acting for Teens and Acting for Adults, run by Sasha Zeilig, and a women's singing group, run by Sandra Goodall, which was later called Bon A Chord. In January 2010, two more activities were added: a Children’s Choir, run by Kathy Southwell and Intermediate Acting run by Sasha Zeilig. Acting Up, an adult's acting and improvisation group was later run by George Fearnehough.
Over the years which followed the association grew from strength to strength with the purchase of equipment, numerous performing opportunities and workshops for members by visiting artists. In addition, various charity concerts were organised with the aim of supporting worthy causes, for example Another night in Pibrac with the Toulouse guides, and A Nautical Night in Pibrac in 2013. Kate Goddard produced several pieces, one of which, St George, she both wrote and directed. In 2010 Kathy Southwell formed a children's singing group. The first show she directed that year was Alice in Wonderland which was repeated in the next year and following that came Bugsy Malone (2012), Treasure Island (2013), Frankie and Me (2014). Karen Dawson directed the shows Chat show, At the Seaside and Jack and the Beastalk, and a comedy workshop culminating in a charity performance which went to purchasing lights for TMA 31. She also directed a Romeo and Juliette workshop with included charity performance raising 1800€ for refugees in Uganda: In 2018, while President of the association, Karen ran two children's theatre workshops with Heather Hughes-McVeigh, the then Treasurer.
In 2012, notably, one of the longest running and most productive groups of the association, Toulouse Comedy Players was born. This group, led by Angela Blyth, produces numerous highly entertaining productions; Stella's / Round the Bend (2014), 10 Comedy Capers (2015), The Affairs at Meddler's Top (2016), That's Life !! (2017) , Pandamonium & The Spy who came in for the phone (2018), and Butler Did It ! (2019). Toulouse Comedy Players also has a charitable function; monies raised from ticket sales not required to cover expenses are donated to various charities. In 2018, for example, €600 was donated to Oncopole Cancer research in Toulouse and in 2019, €400 was donated to Les Amis des Animaux in remembrance of Dottie Ewens.
2015 saw the birth of New Twist with the association's first large scale musical production of Oliver!. With a cast of some 50, and a live orchestra, Kathy Southwell and Sandra Goodall directing and Miles Clery-Fox conducting, it was a roaring success. In 2016 the group produced a variety show Best of British, which, directed by Kathy Southwell, Eve Hirsch and Sam Silverthorn, also raised money for Water Aid. In 2018, with Kathy Southwell (Director) and Miles Clery-Fox (Musical Director) and Eve Hirsch (Vocal Coach) once again at the helm, the next large musical in 2018 was The Sound of Music, a very successful and well received production. In 2022 New Twist was delighted to be able get back on stage post covid restrictions with the hilarious musical Lucky Stiff, directed by Kathy Southwell and musical director Eve Hirsch.
Two new groups were created in 2019/20; Vocal 31 an international adult rock/pop choir (Jutta Kraft – activity leader and Eve Hirsch – musical director) and 31 Musical Fun! A children's musical theatre course for 7 – 11 year olds (Eve Hirsch – Activity Leader and Sarah Bushnell – Course Leader). 2019 saw the association celebrate its 10 year anniversary with a joint charity performance by the association. From the monies raised from this event a 2000€ donation was sent to a school in Uganda which now as a result has two new classrooms.