Amy Grove-Rogers (Joseland) Williamstown Little Theatre life member and my dear friend Amy Georgina Livina Brundrett Grove-Rogers Joseland (I would always address her birthday cards with all her names) - died on Thursday 19 November at 2.30am surrounded by her family. She was ninety three and a half. She had been in reasonable health (and remained basically as bright as a tack) until her last week when she died of respiratory phenomena.
Whilst Amy had associations with both Debney Players and Powderkeg Players, her ‘main group’ however was Willie. Amy joined the theatre in 1977 and at the 1978/79 AGM (mid year in those days) was elected Secretary and Publicity Officer. She held these positions in 1978/79 and 1979/80. At the 1980/81 AGM she was elected Treasurer which she held for 11 years until 1990/91. This makes her our second longest continuous Treasurer (Brian Christopher holds the record from 1996 until today - wow what pills are you on Brian!? - Ivor Porter did seventeen and a half years but these were spread over four periods).
I cast Amy in her first production at Willie in 1978 (now 36 years ago!) in Simon and Laura. She played Jessie the cook-house keeper in a large cast which included Vin Foster, Mary Little and Alex Begg; Doug Lindsay did the set and David Dare was the stage manager. She then appeared in the following production A Flea in Her Ear directed by Grahame Murphy. Included in this cast were Robyn McNally, Mary Little, Ray Hare and Ellis Ebell. Her then husband Ted Grove-Rogers (who was also the theatre’s caretaker/handyman for many years) was also in that production and I remember him whizzing around and around in that bed on the revolve.
Over the years Amy appeared in many other productions and then also took to directing. There was Move Over Mrs Markham (1984), The Bandwagon (1986), Bedroom Farce (1987) and her triumphant production of A Pair of Claws (1988).
For so many years in so many ways Amy was a great theatre member.
Amy was also a great friend which I very much appreciated. For example when she was Secretary and I was President after every committee meeting she would phone me at work the next day (from her work) to let me know that this and that had already been done. Then at other times when I might be working alone during the day set building she would get me around to her home to feed me dinner. Thanks Amy.
There was also their holiday house at Jan Juc where many Willie members spent several weekends having a ball. And Amy was also quite a party gal – who can forget all those parties on The Strand (where one night Trisha Wadds even had to be taken home in hysterics!) through to her 90th birthday party in Altona which several Willie members attended. Fantastic times.
I am so pleased to have had an Amy in my life and now Amy, at your final curtain call, you my lovely friend take a well deserved bow.