October 12, 2008

Three-Nights Take on Bishop

St matthias Church is putting on a 'extravaganza' as part of its celebrations of its 150th anniversary.

Mark Lord-Lear, who is directing the son et lumiere show, explained there will be lighting, live music, a 75-strong choir, and a live band as well as the Bishop of Exeter taking a leading role.

He will play the role of Bishop Henry Phillpotts who consecrated the Wellswood church in 1858.

He said: "What we are doing is running through the history of the church over the last 150-years and going back to when Wellswood began."

Bishop Michael Langrish will play the role of the founder of St Matthias on the first night, and then Bishop Steve Westall from St Luke's Church, Torquay, will take up the mantle on the second night. Archdeacon John Rawlings will play the role of Bishop Phillpotts, who used to live at the site of the Imperial Hotel, for the show's final night.

Former BBC journalist John Kiddey, now a Torquay magistrate, will use his broadcast experience as he narrates the journey through time and space.

Solicitor Phillip Miles will also take part in the play too.

The show runs from Tuesday for three nights.

The idea was dreamed up by church organist Mick Hackeson and was written by deputy corner Paul Newman.

Mr Lord-Lear said the whole production had been in planning for more than a year and was part of the 'crescendo' of the church's year-long celebrations which will conclude with a special service, including confirmation, lead by Bishop Langrish on October 19.

The three-night show is open to members of the public, but Mr Lord-Lear said more than half of the tickets were already sold.

"People can expect something very different in terms of normal expectations of a church. They will see a sound, light and visual extravaganza with a history play thrown in."

Tickets for the production cost pounds6 for adults, pounds3 for children, and a family ticket, for two adults and two children, costs pounds15. To book tickets telephone 01803 214175.

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