Julie Hewitt from the Dereham Operatic Society remembers:-
''The pictures shown are of Dereham Operatic Society’s entry to promote their musical production of Rodgers and Hammerstein’s ‘The King and I’ and were taken at the Lord Mayor’s Street Procession in July 2002.
It was a beautiful and very warm summer’s evening, perfect for the atmosphere of the court of the King of Siam!, and the atmosphere was really jubilant as the cast, together with a whole host of the ‘King’s children’ all excited and very cutely dressed in their costumes, processed around the streets of Norwich, waving at the crowds, and singing to recordings of ‘Getting To Know You’ and ‘Shall We Dance’. The recordings looped so many times that I think even the very ‘seasoned performers’ amongst us had run out of voice by the time we reached the final destination, although the children still seemed to going fairly strong.
I also remember, that our ‘Siamese Palace’ together with canopies, drapes and throne, all ingeniously constructed on a flat-bed truck, did seem to veer and wobble alarmingly on occasions, especially round corners and it was quite a challenge to keep hold (as I was) to at least 2 or 3 very excited 7 year old ‘Princesses’, still singing of course.
I also recall that the whole procession took quite a long time, and at the end of it, we two ‘leading ladies’ had rather a battle (one in a voluminous crinoline, and one in a tightly tubed ‘Siamese’ dress) with the free-standing portaloos provided for participants of the procession!! But it is a quirky and fun occasion which I remember with great fondness.''