My name is Michael Caine

And not a lot of people know that…

After playing northern Park Ranger John Clarke in Calendar Girls, I’ve won the role in another classic British underdog film, the part of Ray Say in The Rise and Fall of Little Voice being directed by Christine Firkin for Lane Cove Theatre company. The show runs from April 10th -13th at Riverview. I’ll post more info as its forthcoming.

Here’s a snippet of the film when Ray Say (Michael Caine) hears LV (Little Voice played by Jane Horrocks) for the first time. Gonna be a lot of fun.

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I’m back on stage! Tickets now on sale for Calendar Girls

Calendar Girls Front Cover Screen Grab

When Annie’s husband John dies of leukaemia, she and best friend Chris decide to raise money for a new settee in the local hospital waiting room.
They manage to persuade four fellow WI members to pose nude with them for an “alternative” calendar, with a little help from hospital porter and amateur photographer, Lawrence.

The news of the women’s charitable venture spreads like wildfire, and hordes of press soon descend on the small village of Knapeley in the Yorkshire Dales.

The calendar is a success, but Chris and Annie’s friendship is put to the test under the strain of their new-­‐found fame.

Based on the true story of eleven WI members who posed nude for a calendar to raise money for the Leukaemia Research Fund, Calendar Girls is the fastest selling play in British theatre history.

I shall be playing the roles of John and Liam.

MORE INFO:
Join the Facebook page here

TICKETS
buy your tickets here

VENUE: Zenith Theatre, Chatswood
DATES in October:
2.00pm Saturday 12th, Thursday 17th, Saturday 19th
5.00pm Sunday 13th
8.00pm Friday 11th, Saturday 12th, Wednesday 16th, Thursday 17th, Friday 18th, Saturday 19th

PREVIEW ARTICLES
The North Shore: WENDY Morton is baring all in a comedy that raises eyebrows for the right reasons
Stage Whispers: North Shore Calendar Girls Grin and Bare It All
The Weekly Times
The Irish Echo

REVIEWS:
Sydney Arts Guide
Weekend Notes
Stage Whispers

Calendar Girls Back Cover Screen Grab

 

Calendar Girls

www image

Very excited to be back on the boards again in October and playing a role that is very close to my heart – Mr John Baker in Calendar Girls

Often described as the female version of The Full Monty (one scene was filmed in our old house in Sheffield!), Calendar Girls is a true story.

When Annie’s husband John dies of leukaemia, she and best friend Chris decide to raise money for a new settee in the local hospital waiting room.
They manage to persuade four fellow WI members to pose nude with them for an “alternative” calendar, with a little help from hospital porter and amateur photographer, Lawrence.
The news of the women’s charitable venture spreads like wildfire, and hordes of press soon descend on the small village of Knapeley in the Yorkshire Dales.
The calendar is a success, but Chris and Annie’s friendship is put to the test under the strain of their new-­‐found fame.
Based on the true story of eleven WI members who posed nude for a calendar to raise money for the Leukaemia Research Fund, Calendar Girls is the fastest selling play in British theatre history.

The hugely successful play by Tim Firth first played at Chichester Festival Theatre on 5th September 2008.

For my audition, I did my best to match the sheer brilliance of the dearly departed Mr Pete Posthlethwaite and his memorable monologue rejecting the award in Brassed Off. Gets me every time. RIP Mr Pete.

Speaking engagement at The Creative Forum at NIDA – Audience, Arts and Technology

A one hour Forum at NIDA, the National Institute of Dramatic Arts (www.nida.com.au) where the
panel discuss the new platforms enabling arts entities to communicate with their audiences and the effect that has on brand and marketing.

Panel:
Nick Bolton – TEN ALPHAS
Tam Nguyen, Online Development Manager, NIDA
Julia Thomas Sydney Festival
Helen Varley Jamieson – Creative Catalyst
Dennis Del Favero : http://www.icinema.unsw.edu.au

Sunday 21st April 2013

Jane E Seymour video interviews me for SET the play

Jane E Seymour requested an interview with me to spill the beans on SET the play , for her blog RPWorkshops

How did SET the play come about?
Listen to Nick discuss how he and Sam imagined, devised and realised the script for SET:The Play. A great snapshot into the process of bringing ideas onto the page.

Collaborations, Nick, Sam & home & Away writers
A fascinating insight into the writing process and how collaborating can be so very effective in creating a playtext; and presenting seasoned professionals with a solid challenge out of their usual writing comfort zone.

13 Characters, Casting, Performance Dates, Venues
Nick discusses the casting process and what he was aiming for; plus the ‘when’ and ‘where SET:the Play will be performed….. NIDA studio in April / May 2013

Whats Next
Nick talks about what’s coming up next when SET:The Play is up and running.

Speaking gig at NIDA – Panel members required!

So we’re about 6 weeks from opening night for my next theatrical venture, SET the play which premieres at NIDA! Sam Atwell and I submiited the treatment for the play to the NIDA Independent Program and we were dleighted when we were one of four productions to be chosen.
Rehearsals start on Wednesday and the Marketing will hit the streets the week after.

SET is a new murder mystery that will go behind the scenes of an Australian TV soap opera with a satirical look at the glamorous world of celebrity and the cogs of the machine that makes it turn.
Its gonna be a lotta fun with a lot of audience involvement!

NIDA run a monthly Creative Forum and April’s event is on Audience Participation on Sunday 21st April. NIDA have asked me to be moderate the session and I will be joined by film and theatre practitioners to discuss how new technology is changing the audience experience.
Panel members are still being sourced so any ideas welcome!

Event details and registration process here

NIDA Creative Forum Screenshot

Meet Mr Pissed

A few years ago my mate Phil Watson came and saw Bondi Dreaming. Over a few post theatre analytical refreshments, he mentioned a script he had written called Mr Pissed. A politically incorrect adult version of the Mr Men books we all loved as kids.

Mr Pissed

I was immediately intrigued, and indeed when he sent me the script, laughed my head off at it.
We read it at Actors Anonymous and it was very well received, and I was keen to get it up.

Life then got in the way (I moved to Melbourne) and I forgot all about it.
Last year my good friend Bruce Glen, aka The Gentleman Magician, reminded me about it, and I dug it out of the hard drives, and was pleased to see it still resonated.
So I got in touch with Phil again and we gave it a refresh, and submitted it to Short&Sweet as an ITC (Independent Theatre Company) submission by Actors Anonymous.
Mr Pissed will play in Week 8 at the King Street Theatre.

It still cracks me up so much, and thats without the awesome costumes, projected cartoon visuals and sound effects that will just add the icing on the cake.

In researching the Mr Men, I found out that they are the third highest selling books in history! And its been lovely reading them again bringing back many lovely childhood memories. The series celebrated their 40th anniversary last week. What a legacy for their creator Mr Roger Hargreaves.

Writer: Phil Watson
Director: Nick Bolton
Producer: Nick Bolton
Costume Designer: Kathy Baker

mr pissed cast

The Cast L-R
Mr Pissed: Matt Lancey
Miss Tits: Danielle Emery
Narrator: Bruce Glen
Mr Hussein: Anurag Chakradhar

More information on Short&Sweet can be seen at www.shortandsweet.org

Venue: King Street Theatre
Performances:
Dress: Tues 26th Feb at 8pm
Shows: Weds 27th Feb to Sat 2nd March at 8pm, and Sunday 3rd March at 5.15pm
Tickets at at www.shortandsweet.org

The Review:
Bolton has cast and choreographed this play with humorous precision.
Sydney Arts Guide

The Results
Very very happy to come third in the judges vote.
My good friend Kate Toon came first with Coma Sutra
I directed Kate’s short films Dreams of Evolution and The Postcard
And Danielle Emery who played Miss Tits, jumped on board Coma Sutra at the last minute replacing the previously cast actress who had tonsilitis.
Congrats to Kate , Danni, and Aaron J. Nilan who gave a very impressive performance as the guy, in the grand final

Stoppard wins at the 2013 Sydney Theatre Awards

Thrilled that Caroline Brazier won Best Actress in a Leading Role in an Independent Production, at the 2013 Sydney Theatre Awards, for I Want To Sleep With Tom Stoppard, the show I produced on behalf of http://www.rocksurfers.org.

Sydney Theatre Awards

The Sydney Theatre Awards are run by a group of theatre critics to celebrate the strength, quality and diversity of theatre in Sydney. The Sydney Theatre Reviewers are Elissa Blake (Sun Herald), Jason Blake (Sydney Morning Herald), Chris Hook (Daily Telegraph), Deborah Jones (The Australian), Darryn King (Time Out Sydney), Jo Litson (The Sunday Telegraph), John McCallum (The Australian) and Diana Simmonds (Stagenoise website).

The 2013 Awards took place at Paddington RSL on Monday 14th January 2013

We got three nominations for I want to sleep with Tom Stoppard:
Best New Australian Work – Toby Schmitz
Best Supporting Actress in a leading Independent Production – Wendy Strehlow
Best Actress in a leading Independent Production – Caroline Brazier

Presenters at the Awards ceremony included Amanda Bishop, Wayne Blair, Mitchell Butel, Zoe Carides, Trudy Dalgleish, James Earl Jones, Angela Lansbury, Alice Livingstone, Michael Scott Mitchell, Lara Mulcahy, Tommy Murphy and Guy Noble.

Congratulations to al the nominees, and thanks to the organisers for such a great night.
1_STOPPARD_4 stars

Lessons learnt from my first crowdfunding campaign

The project:
I experimented with crowdfunding for my latest theatre show The Interview. Why? Well you don’t get involved in independent theatre to make money. Breaking even is considered a success. So the ability to raise a few dollars was irresistible.

The implementation and strategy:
We used the Pozible system which was very intuitive and easy to use.
We created a little lo-fi video explaining the project, and set up a number of rewards

Check out the Pozible page here.

We promoted the campaign primarily via email and social media updating, along with updates to the Pozible page and our website for the theatre show.

The rewards:
A list of the rewards can be seen here

The results:
We reached the first $1000 (a third of the target) in the first three days – this is easy we thought! Closer analysis showed that the vast majority came from two people.
We reached $2000 by the end of week two, largely due to an Executive Producer pledge from Alison’s mum Marie McGirr
We reached our target with ten days to go, thanks to a few large pledgers in other family members and two very close friends.
We finished up at $3,935, nearly 25% over target, which was very pleasing, reaching our target with ten days to go.

Lessons (in no particular order)
1/ Target your pledgers
The majority of the revenue came from a small number of people, who were either family friends or had been contacted directly by one of the producers. Blanket emails and social media updates generated a few pledges but none of the big ones, which all came via a direct request. So lesson learnt here is to be more direct with your target list of pledgers

2/ Time and effort.
As the main producer on the show, on top of running a busy production company, I underestimated the time required to manage the campaign. I wish I had been more disciplined and planned half an hour every morning of time to enhance the campaign effectiveness.

3/ Marketing and strategy required
More content was needed to provide something new to talk about. Lucikliy we had lots of blog entries and video diaries to keep the meesage fresh and new. also as we has success early, so we never came across as desperate for cash. Potential pledgers saw that our campaign was on track, and felt part of something achievable.

4/ Reduce the number of rewards
In retrospect I do feel we had a few too many rewards. Anecdotally, friends mentioned that they just got a bit daunted by the number of rewards, so definitely simplify it.

5/ Be thankful and open.
I was very keen to be in contact with the pledgers as much as possible, and to thank them as much in all our marketing and advertising material. This was well received and made them feel part of our journey and adventure. It was lovely meeting them all at the theatre and thanking them personally.


L-R Sam Atwell, Alison McGirr, Marie McGirr, Nick Bolton, Tom McGirr

6/ The Pozible network.
None of our pledgers came via the Pozible network.
We were never featured on their home page as one to watch? So we didnt get any viral effect by being attracted to new audiences.
This isn’t me having a go at Posible by the way. I appreciate there is limited real estate on the home page, and many projects were higher profile than ours.

7/ USP or Celebrity attachment
Our project wasn’t anything spectacularly new, nor did it involve anyone with a name. I do feel that having something different, or someone famous attached to the project would give credibility to the potential pledgers.

8/ Crowdfunding saturation
I was nervous about crowdfunding due to the ubiquity of campaigns these days. Every creative project seems to run a campaign, and it has become saturated. So I was very very pleased that our campaign was a success.

9/ Scale
We are all quite well networked but in terms of taking the campaign to more people was very hard. Our campaign didn’t go viral at all.

So, would I do it again – Yes, but did find the effort required grater than expected.
But I would plan the campaign a bit better, and even allocate the campaign to a Producer to manage totally.
I would have the communication campaign scheduled and create a targeted list of potential pledgers.