The Rivals – Cast Biogs

Biographies of the Directors/Producers
and the Cast


The Directors/Producers – Martyn Fry and Tony Jeans

Martyn  is a very experienced actor, director and producer and a Founder Member of the Players. Amongst his many roles, he starred as Capt. Von Trapp in ‘Sound of Music’ (his favourite) and as The Marshall in ‘A Man for this Season’. In this production, he also takes on the lead role of Sir Anthony Absolute.

Tony has worked in production for the Players since 2000. He has also written sketches for ‘Let Us Be Merry’ and the Street Theatre for the Good Friday ‘Walk of Witness’. Tony stayed backstage until in 2013 when he was persuaded to take the role of Joseph in ‘A Man for This Season’.

This is the third “Classic” drama for the Players that Martyn and Tony have created, following ‘Murder in the Cathedral’ in 2004 and ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’ in 2008.


Mike Robson


Mike Robson has lots of technical production experience with various companies. This is his first starring role (as the dashing Captain Jack Absolute) for the Players.

Jane Jones

Jane Jones Previous work with The Players involved Production, Stage Management and Props for a variety of productions including multiple ‘Let Us Be Merrys’, ‘My Fair Lady’, ‘Oliver’, ‘Midsummer Night’s Dream’, ‘Escape’, ‘A Man for this Season’. Acted in double bill ‘That’s Life’, chorus in ‘Murder in the Cathedral’, Professor Sound in ‘The 39 Steps’, and now this!

Bethie Connor

Bethie Connor First experience of The Players was ‘My Fair Lady’ with several roles including a flower girl, a maid and the chorus.  Her second outing was in the one act comedy ‘Parentcraft’, as part of the ‘That’s Life’ event, where she played an eight month pregnant single mum called Siobhan! Acted in ‘Fame’ with Stage Experience and numerous school productions including ‘Bugsy Malone’ and ‘Romeo and Juliet’.

Helen Roberts

Helen Roberts is a very experienced performer and has taken major parts in productions for a number of companies in Cheltenham. Roles for the Players include Titania in ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’ and Rose in ‘The Parcel’.  In ‘A Man for This Season’, Helen gave an unforgettable performance as Marie/Mary Magdalene and now in this production she takes on a “trouser” role as Faulkland.

Melody Davies

Melody Davies This is Melody’s first production with the Players. She has performed in many shows with the Cheltenham Operatic and Dramatic Society, usually as a dancer, including ‘Singin’ in the Rain,’ ‘South Pacific’ and ‘Sweet Charity.’ Her most recent acting role was as Annelle in ‘Steel Magnolias.’ She is delighted to be in a show that doesn’t start with ‘s’!

Tim Blakey

Tim Blakey First performed with the Players in the early noughties as Sandy Tyrell in Noel Coward’s ‘Hay Fever’. Despite enjoying the experience greatly it was ten years before he performed with the Players again in ‘Parent Craft’ as Derek Coxhead.


Geoff Ramshaw

Geoff Ramshaw Participated in Peter Grainger’s original and memorable ‘Whose Birthday Did You Say’ as Jesus! This was followed by ‘Hay Fever’, ‘Players Please’, ‘Sunset House’, ‘Murder in the Cathedral’ and ‘A Man For This Season’. His favourite roles have been as Fagin in ‘Oliver’, Oberon in ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’ and Alfred Dolittle in My Fair Lady.

Alison Talbot

 Alison Talbot (Lucy) has been involved with the Players since 1992, and enjoyed roles as varied as a rat in ‘Toad of Toad Hall’, a nun in ‘The Sound of Music’ and a vamp in Hay Fever!  She has also been an enthusiastic member of the chorus in several ‘Let Us Be Merry’ evenings, and other musicals such as ‘Oliver!’ and most recently ‘My Fair Lady.

John Palmer

John Palmer has taken major roles in Players’ productions since 1992. He starred as The Inspector in ‘An Inspector Calls’, as Thomas in ‘Murder in the Cathedral’ and as Theseus in ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’. John has also been compere in a number of ‘Let Us Be Merry’ Christmas Shows.

Sue Drinkwater

Sue Drinkwater Her first experience with the CKCP was in the chorus of ‘Oliver!’ followed by parts in sketches, choir etc in the annual ‘Let Us Be Merry’ events.  Joined the chorus in ‘My Fair Lady’.  Played Resident in Peter Grainger’s ‘A Man for This Season’. Played the part of Miss Bourne in the ‘Ghost Train’ and several parts (including the Inn Keeper and Professor Bartlett) in ‘The 39 Steps’.

Tim Masling

Tim has appeared in the last few CKCP Productions playing a Policeman in ‘The Parcel’ and a Guard in ‘A Man For This Season’, but his biggest role to date was as the Station Master in the recent ‘Ghost Train’. There seems to be a common theme of uniform with his role as a servant in the Rivals. Next January he will appear in the chorus for Promenade Production’s Panto, ‘Robin Hood’.

Molly Powell

This is Molly Powell’s second appearance with the Players. She took the part of  the abused girl, Becky, in ‘A Man for This Season’ but in this production she has taken on a “trouser” role as the Errand Boy and Servant to Bob Acres.

Sylvia Fry 

Sylvia Fry has taken both acting and production roles for the Players over many years. Recent parts have included The Queen of Transylvania  in ‘My Fair Lady’, the waitress in ‘The Parcel’ and Churchwoman in ‘A Man for This Season’.

Deb Masling

Deb Masling First involved in ’Oliver!’ after many years in the audience.  Has been involved in the annual ‘Let Us Be Merry’ evenings, ‘My Fair Lady’, ‘The Parcel’, ‘Parent craft’ and the recent double-bill: ‘The 39 Steps’ and ‘The Ghost Train’.  She is also a member of Promenade Productions, taking part in the musical Oklahoma and has just started rehearsing for panto.