Adelaide University Footlights Club
MSS 790.2099423 A2283m
The Adelaide University Footlights Club was formed in 1930 with the declared objects of arranging an annual University Revue and to 'supervise and advance the interests of its members in dramatic pursuits'. The first revue was staged on 18 December at the Theatre Royal, replacing the traditional Varsity Concert, with further revues held annually to 1938 (at the Tivoli from 1934). Productions ceased with the start of war in 1939 but were revived in 1948, with revues held in the Tivoli that year and in 1949 and 1950.
Again there was a hiatus before a revival in 1953, with revues held in the Hut on campus, in the Studio Theatre in 1956 and from 1958 in the new Union Hall. Comic sketches and song and dance with a strong representation by women students featured largely in the original revues of the 1930s and in the early years of the post-war revival. The Club made a brief foray into 'straight' drama in 1959 with a production of Hamlet but otherwise concentrated on the annual revue, with stronger political and social commentary in later years.
Production was more erratic in the 1970s, but in 1980 the revue They route horses, don’t they? was staged to celebrate Footlight’s jubilee. Revues continued through the 80s, several in conjunction with the Law Students’ Society. The 1980s also saw Footlights’ presentations of comedy presentations for the Adelaide Festival and Fringe, and in 1987-88 plays of more depth with a comedy element.
In February-March 2006 and 2008 Old Footlighters’ who had participated from the 1948 to 1970 presented Be your age revues for the Adelaide Fringe.
The history of the Footlights Club, focussing on the period 1953-1973, is documented in the Adelaide University Footlights Club website http://www.footlights.net.au
The minute book and papers re the 1969-72 and 1976 revues were presented to the Library in July 1981 by Matthew Goode. Additional papers, including most of the revue scripts and programs, were received in December 2003, September 2004, December 2005 and 2007 from Susan Lawrence.
Additional programmes were transferred from the Theatre Programmes collection in 2008.
1. Minutes 30 September 1930-13 March 1961; March 1961-Sept. 1963. 2 v.
2. Revue scripts and working files 1956-61, 1964-1972. 40cm.
- 1956 Six bells for Venus [songs by Albert Bunn only]
- 1957 That lunatic fringe [cast circular]
- 1958 That adamant eve, Pts I & II (2 copies, plus 3rd copy of Pt 1)
- 1959 Out of this world
- 1960 Strictly between us (2 copies)
- 1961 Blind date (2 copies)
- 1964 To catch a rocking horse
- 1965 Ta Ta, Goonight, goonight (3 copies)
- 1966 Scribble on the wall
- 1967 Get here
- 1968 It's a riot
- 1969 Now is the time
- 1970 Gobble
- 1971 Cosmic cornies
- 1972 Green is the colour of Mike Truelove's hare.
- Also a selection of single skits, not individually dated but from revues 1968-72.
3. Revue programmes 1930-1931, 1949-1950, 1953-1973, 1980, 1987-1988. 5 cm. originals and photocopies
See Special List
[also programme of More at 8.15, Mr Coward performed by Old Footlighters, n.d.]
see also programmes and newspaper cuttings pasted or inserted loosely into the
minute book and with the working files in Series 2, reproductions from 1933-1936 programmes in Series 9 and posters in Series 5
4. Revue photographs, drawing 1968. 19 items.
Photographs and paper prints from scans of originals [include Robyn Archer; many unidentified]
1935: 6 photographs mounted in mat 45 x 66 cm (Oversize, in Map Cabinet)
Includes a copy of a drawing by Hugo Shaw of Geoff Ward and Brian Bergin(?) in rehearsal for 1974 revue
see also in minute book and Series 6
5. Revue posters 1956, 1966, 1976. 7 items. Oversize, in Map Cabinet
- Hamlet 1959
- Six bells 1956 original drawing on board 80 x 75 cm
- Strictly between us 1960
- To catch a rocking horse 1964 (2 paintings by Steve Ramsay)
- Scribble on the wall 1966, cloth on hanging rod 58 x 36 cm
- Gobble 1970, cloth 25 x 66 cm
- Full frontal allegory 1976 colour poster 66 x 46 cm
- see also Gobble poster in Series 2 selection of skits
6. [Exhibition of history of Footlights 1930-71] In oversize envelope
Source materials collected for, and photocopies displayed for the 50th anniversary exhibition. Includes extracts from Footlights Club minutes, newspaper reviews of Revues and
1958 summary history of the Club by Jeff Scott
7. Jubilee reunion, December 2003
Running sheet and scripts, greetings from Sue Adey (1959-61), Footlights member Suzanne Seager, dinner menu and article from Advertiser (December 2003) by Samela Harris
8. Film The Prosh report 1968, 37 minutes
35mm film of the TV show The Prosh report recorded at Channel 9 studios on Saturday July 21 1968 and shown on Tuesday July 30 at 10.30pm, featuring the Wesley Three and Robyn Smith (now Archer)
Also DVD copies made in 2007, and photocopied articles from On Dit 1968.
9. 75th Anniversary Commemorative Dinner Saturday October 15th, 2005. 8 items
Menus featuring reproductions from Footlights ptogrammes from 1933-1936. 8 items