The glory years of Eric Idle, Peter Cook, Bill Oddie, Tim Brooke-Taylor amongst others saw the Pembroke Players flourish, and a modern day resurgence drives us to be the biggest college drama society in Cambridge.
Whilst a term’s worth of shows constituted one or two productions and involved a dozen or so people back in 1955, 60 years later the story is much different. The society now holds up to nine shows per term in Pembroke College’s studio theatre, alongside producing up to three shows in other venues across Cambridge.
Comedy is a big part of the Pembroke Players; while the Sticky Floor and Golden Gods smokers brighten up Michaelmas and Easter, Lent Term sees our annual Black Tie Smoker, “the classiest event on the Cambridge comedy calendar”.
The Pembroke Players are also active outside Cambridge! The first tour – around what was then West Germany – took place in Summer 1957, playing at venues in Bielefeld, Essen, Düsseldorf and Cologne. More recently, the Japan Tour has been running since 2007 and has hit its stride taking Shakespeare to Japan. Recent tours have included Much Ado About Nothing and The Comedy of Errors. In addition we support Pembroke students who choose to take part in University touring drama, by way of the Peter Cook Fund.
The society enjoyed its most profitable year to date under the 60th Anniversary committee. This was thanks to a complete overhaul which re-energised the society with new ideas, including the launch of a successful membership and loyalty scheme masterminded by Robert Eyers, and a brand new marketing and ticketing structure from Ellie Gould and Alex Stride; Jacob Baldwin as Technical Director managing and installing a major upgrade to the technical setup.
Sixty years later, however, and our primary aim is still the same. We want to encourage alternative, friendly student theatre within Cambridge with particular regard to Pembroke students. No one who takes part in Pembroke Players is required to have any experience for any role. You can either dip your feet in the edge of the pool or jump fully clothed into the deep end of drama life. All we ask for is dedication and excitement. Please do take a look around our site and then get in touch with us to find out more and get involved!