Voting begins for drama awards

CAST your votes now!The time has come for theatregoers to have their say on who should win the coveted People's Choice Award at the forthcoming East Suffolk Theatre Amateur Awards (ESTAAs).

CAST your votes now!

The time has come for theatregoers to have their say on who should win the coveted People's Choice Award at the forthcoming East Suffolk Theatre Amateur Awards (ESTAAs).

The award, jointly sponsored by the Evening Star and Tower Ramparts Shopping Centre, is just one accolade being handed out at the awards ceremony being held in March – but it is the only one in which the public can have their say.

The ballot will be open at the weekend when people will be invited to vote for any one of 25 amateur performances that have been judged during the last year.

And everyone who votes will have their name entered into a draw with some top prizes up for grabs.

On Saturday voting will take place at Tower Ramparts Shopping Centre with the opportunity to win a first prize of an off road driving day for two courtesy of Hadleigh Lexus Jeep Mitsubishi.

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Other prizes include a signed Ipswich Town football, shopping centre vouchers and two tickets to see My Fair Lady by the Angel Players.

On Sunday the ballot moves to Solar Superstore in Felixstowe. Those who submit their vote here will be in with a chance of scooping a portrait sitting with Barrett & Coe Designer Photographers or a pair of tickets to one of a number of theatrical productions.

As well as being given the chance to vote, shoppers in Ipswich on Saturday will also be treated to performances by two groups of Suffolk youngsters.

Ipswich Theatretrain and the Voice Squad, a group of about 45 singers aged 12 to 18 from Bury St Edmunds, will both be performing at Tower Ramparts throughout the day.

Grand prize draw tickets will also be on sale with top prizes including a 28-inch widescreen TV, a weekend hotel break and football tickets.

All money raised will be donated to six charities – the Vicky Hall Memorial Fund, East Suffolk MIND, Victim Support, St Elizabeth Hospice, Disability Care Enterprise and Age Concern.

The ESTAAs, sponsored by Global Sound & Light, in Felixstowe Road, will be held at the Swallow Belstead Brook Hotel on March 28 and will be attended by Peter Purves and Helen McDermott. There are eight awards up for grabs with amateur theatre groups from across the region in the running.

ESTAA director Jacqueline Cumiskey said: "Twenty-five amateur theatre performances have been judged during the last year, all giving extremely impressive performances making the job very difficult for the adjudication panel."

n Voting for the People's Choice Award will be held at Tower Ramparts Shopping Centre, in Ipswich, on Saturday and Solar Superstore, in Felixstowe on Sunday. Votes can also be cast online until February 4 at


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