Riccarton Players was formed by a group of enthusiastic thespians in 1960 primarily to read and discuss plays.
It was not until July 1961 that Riccarton Players gave its first public performance.
The club went through three name changes. When it was formed it became "The Riccarton Play Readers Group", and then in 1961 became "The Riccarton Dramatic Society" in preparation for its first public performance. In 1963 with a flourishing membership and three major performances a year, it became simply "The Riccarton Players".
The group has performed in Church Halls, School Halls, large and small theatres, before finally purchasing and refurbishing - The Mill Theatre - in 1983.
Riccarton Players enjoys an enviable reputation in Christchurch. In its relatively short history it has achieved much, with a broad spectrum of theatrical endeavour, with diverse productions catering for a wide audience.
A typical year's programming saw this recreational theatrical society present approximately nine productions which typically include childrens’ shows, a variety show, a major musical production, and a few comedies and dramas to round out the mix.
Riccarton Players has an extensive wardrobe with items for hire for parties, events, other productions, etc, for a nominal fee. It owned and administered The Mill Theatre which was its base/clubrooms until the events of February 22, 2011 took it from us. Until then all monies earned through the box office were channeled back into the theatre and society.
As a recreational theatrical society, Riccarton Players is always on the lookout to promote the society and its productions. None of its members are paid for services offered and Riccarton Players actively seeks sponsorship, the basis of which can be negotiated to include bonus performances, complimentary tickets, general acknowledgments and inclusion on all advertising.
Since the seismic events detailed above the we have been on a quest to find accommodation suitable for a society of our standing, having now served Christchurch and the Community for 50 years. We were successful in acquiring our own headquarters at 2/30 Carlyle Street in Sydenham. We can store our extensive wardrobe, set and properties in this warehouse as well as using the space for small rehearsals and meetings.
Riccarton Players has a commitment to presenting our audiences with consistently high quality theatre and we have worked long and hard for our reputation.
We are now a registered charity and can be found by searching the Charities Register .
Directed by Doug Clarke, Annette Searle & Diane Coad, October 2018
Cecily and The Child
Directed by Barry Grant and Doug Clarke respectively, July 2018
Playbox: i thought i saw a Pussy Cat
Directed by Callun Lewis, July 2018
Kings of the Gym
Directed by John "JB" Boyce and Darren Sundborn, April - May 2018
Directed by Doug Clarke, Choreography by Annette Searle, October 2017