Gordon Clarkson Awarded Lifetime Achievement Award
by Luke Cornwell

AwardWhen Gordon was asked by Ralph Hoult of the Starlight Entertainers to perform at the King’s Theatre, Ramsgate, to mark the charity group’s 30th anniversary, he was not aware that he was to receive the very first “Thanet Obelisk Lifetime Achievement Award”...

On Saturday 23rd November 2013, Gordon was presented the award by “Mr Margate” Cllr Mick Tomlinson and Mr Hoult to mark a career spanning over 30 years in entertainment.

After accepting his award and as a finale to the awards night, Gordon performed ‘Thanks for the Memory’, a medley celebrating the stars of Music Hall. While he sang, a slideshow of photographs depicting poignant moments in his performing life was projected onto the screen behind him.

Gordon said: “I am thrilled that I have been given this beautiful award which represents hard work, diligence and a sincere desire to use whatever talents I have been given to bring happiness and entertainment to people of all ages.

“I do well when working outside the area, but my benchmark has always been my standing in my home town of Thanet.”

The first “Thanet Obelisk Awards Night” was organised and presented by Mr. Hoult to celebrate local theatre and events. All the recipients were unaware they were to receive an award until the event.

13 awards were given to local event organisers and performers, presented by local celebrities, councillors and showbiz personalities. The evening’s entertainment included 18-year-old Ben Hoenes, who won awards for Best Actor and Best Male Singer, Wisewood’s Dance, who won the award for Best Dance Troupe, and Stage Door who performed three numbers from their production of Les Misérables, which won them the Best Musical Theatre Award.

Mr Hoult wrote on Facebook: “The ‘Thanet Obelisk Awards’ could end up being the biggest thing in Thanet and every performer and events person will strive to get one – they will try harder and make more things happen. What we are doing is bringing a much bigger community spirit.”

(View the images from the slideshow below)

 

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Photo Descriptions

01: A photo call for press when Gordon was about 7 - outside the Lido Theatre, Cliftonville. He was featured in the juvenile routines mainly because he was the only boy!

02: Gordon and his Dad, Peter, joined an accordion band which toured to day centres, OAP clubs, convalescent hotels etc. They provided “comedy relief” in between the musical medleys (circa 1974).

03: As above - “comedy relief” in between the musical medleys (circa 1974).

04: Photo call for variety concert to be staged at Granville Ballroom, Ramsgate (Gordon in sombrero!)

05: In 1982, Gordon produced his first show: “Music Maestro Please”

06: Early 80’s Gordon worked at the Lido Music Hall, Cliftonville.

07: Mid 80’s Gordon had some photos taken to illustrate his versatility!

08: Mid 80’s Gordon had some photos taken to illustrate his versatility!

09: Mid 80’s Gordon had some photos taken to illustrate his versatility!

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11: His first photo as a member of actors union “Equity”

12: In 1984 he was in the 16 week summer season “The Good Old Days” at the Winter Gardens, Margate.

13: In 1988 he appeared as “Genie” in the grand reopening production of the historic Theatre Royal Margate, also understudying the comic “Wishee Washee”.For just under 2 weeks he played Wishee Washee, and this picture shows the cast singing “Auld Lang Syne” after the finale on New Years Eve 1989!

14: Backstage (without Turban) having a laugh in the dressing room.

15: Touring clubs in the early 90’s - this one, backstage (in the boiler room) in Leicester.

16: Appearing in panto at the newly refurbished Arts Centre, Haverhill - during rehearsals when a butterfly landed on Steve’s head in the middle of a gag!

17: In the dressing room at Haverhill in one of the set of beautiful finale costumes Joy made.

18: Last night party of the Summer Season 1991 in our own show at the Lido Music Hall, Cliftonville, (Joy, centre holding top hat!)

19: During that summer, Gordon fell off the stage and broke his leg, and Stage Manager son Joe fell off his motorbike, but the show went on!

20/21: Summer Season 1992 saw the show appear at Margate, Deal, Herne Bay, Bexhill, Sutton!

22: The first of many packed houses with “Music Hall Matinee” at the Winter Gardens, Margate 1993

23: Simple Simon shows for children started in 1993 and are still going strong!

23a: Gordon and Joy hosting an after show party for Summer Season 1995 - Granville Theatre, Ramsgate

23b: Summer Season 1995 - Granville Theatre, Ramsgate

23c: Summer Season 1995 - Granville Theatre, Ramsgate

23d: Summer Season 1995 - Granville Theatre, Ramsgate

24: Gordon and Joy were involved with the reopening again of the Theatre Royal Margate in 1995

25: “Mother Goose landed at the Theatre Royal, Margate for Christmas 1995

26: “Mother Goose landed at the Theatre Royal, Margate for Christmas 1995

27: “Mother Goose landed at the Theatre Royal, Margate for Christmas 1995

28: Backstage at Princess Theatre, Torquay for a two week run at the end of a gruelling nationwide tour in 1996 which culminated in Gordon and Joy making theatrical history when they produced the pantomimes at both theatres in Margate, and toured them both too!

29a: Summer Season and tour 1997

29b: Summer Season and tour 1997

29c: Summer Season and tour 1997

29d: Summer Season and tour 1997

30: “Tonight at Eight” - Winter Gardens Margate, Sunday’s 1998

31: “Tonight at Eight” - Winter Gardens Margate, Sunday’s 1998

32: Charity Show for Ralph Hoult

33: Gordon and Joy off to a party!

34: “Sleeping Beauty” at the Theatre Royal and Tour - Christmas Season 1997

35: “Sleeping Beauty” at the Theatre Royal and Tour - Christmas Season 1997

36: Gordon’s first play - “Party to Murder”, Theatre Royal Margate - Summer Season 1998

37: Gordon’s first play - “Party to Murder”, Theatre Royal Margate - Summer Season 1998

38: “Aladdin”, Theatre Royal Margate and tour Christmas Season 1998

39: “Aladdin”, Theatre Royal Margate and tour Christmas Season 1998

40: Gordon’s second play - “Rehearsal for Murder”, Theatre Royal Margate - Summer Season 1999

41: Gordon’s second play - “Rehearsal for Murder”, Theatre Royal Margate - Summer Season 1999

42: “Cinderella” - Theatre Royal, Margate - Christmas Season 1999

43: “Cinderella” - Theatre Royal, Margate - Christmas Season 1999

44: “Cinderella” - Theatre Royal, Margate - Christmas Season 1999

45: “Goldilocks” - The Granville Theatre, Ramsgate – 2000

46: “Goldilocks” - The Granville Theatre, Ramsgate - 2000

47: Our “On with the Show” Charity Walk around the ancient border of the Isle of Thanet

48: “There’ll Always be an England”

49: “There’ll Always be an England”

50: Gordon pictured sometime early into the new millennium!

 

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