Creative team

The creative team of the Co-op Juniors Theatre Company have a wealth of experience and skills and are the driving force behind the group’s productions.

(left to right) Kerry Sayer, Pauline Walker, Nigel Virley and Jeannie Ingram

(left to right) Kerry Sayer,
Pauline Walker, Nigel Virley
and Jeannie Ingram

Resident Directors

Pauline Walker and Jeannie Ingram, both former Juniors, are the company’s directors and have been working on shows for over 40 years. They each received Lifetime Achievement recognition at the East Anglian 2004 regional theatre awards.

They cast every show and draw young talent from the Co-op Dance Classes held in Suffolk.

Musical Director

Musical director Nigel Virley joined the company at the Ipswich Regent in 1978. He composes original numbers and orchestrates other music for all the company’s shows. A piano and vocal coach, he also wrote many of the pantomimes staged at the Regent.

“I love the variety, it’s never the same. We can go from ragtime to jazz, gospel to country, modern to classical, Abba to rock, all in one show.

“The musical challenge of productions like Les Misérables and We Will Rock You brings something different from the cast, and their commitment to every show is amazing.

“Christmas Spectacular! is the special one, though. It’s a huge undertaking to come up with music to suit different ages and different dance styles.”

Resident Choreographer

Kerry Sayer, resident choreographer, joined the group when she was six and now works with the company throughout the year. She trained as a professional dancer and performed worldwide.

“The excitement and energy generated by the cast makes it a real pleasure to work with them. We tackle such a huge range of dance styles that I never get bored.

“After 34 years, I know what works and what doesn’t, but we never stop pushing the boundaries. The more you do, the more you can do, that’s the secret of our success!”

The company often works with guest choreographers, including former company members who work professionally in dance and musical theatre. These include:

Gary Avis, currently Assistant Ballet Master with the Royal Ballet

Vincent Redmon, previously with Ballet Rambert and the Royal Ballet

The company also believes strongly in the personal development of their own talented youngsters and senior members are given the opportunity to choreograph and express their creativity

Technical Director

Alan Ayres designs and operates the lighting for each show, and has been with the company since 1978. As technical director, he is responsible for the set and schedules the complex operation of getting equipment, set, cast and crew to the right place at the right time. He works closely with sound designer and operator Paul Lofts, and together they run the business and financial side of Co-op Juniors Theatre Productions Ltd.