Robyn Ryan named Lion's Citizen of the Year

Lions Citizen of the Year Robyn Ryan with Lions Ian Acret (L) and Graham Apthorpe.
Lions Citizen of the Year Robyn Ryan with Lions Ian Acret (L) and Graham Apthorpe.

Cowra Lion's Citizen of the Year Robyn Ryan gives 110% in everything she does and contributes so much to the life of the Cowra community.

"Without her efforts we would be a poorer community, less enriched and less joyful," Cowra Lions Club president Graham Apthorpe said, presenting the award to Robyn.

Robyn joined the Cowra Musical and Dramatic Society in 1989. Her first show was a chorus role in the musical 'Annie'.

Over the next 10 years she performed in a number of productions including; 'Little Shop of Horrors', 'The Ghost Train', 'House of Frankenstein' and 'Fools Rush In ', where she married her husband Lawrance on stage three years before they married in real life.

She joined the M&D committee in 1994 as secretary.

In 1997 Robyn directed and took the lead role in the Noel Coward play 'Blithe Spirit', which was staged in the Gooloogong Log Cabin. It was during this production that Robyn discovered her ability to present amateur theatrical productions in a way that engaged local audiences.

In October 1998 Robyn wrote and self-published the book 'Treading the Boards', a 35th anniversary history of the Cowra M&D. In 2003, she released an update covering shows produced in the ensuing five years.

It was in 1999 that Robyn had her first success with a major musical production when she produced and directed a production of 'Calamity Jane'. In the show she also played the lead role of 'Calamity Jane' opposite husband Lawrance in the role of 'Wild Bill Hickock'. The show was nominated for Best Musical in the 1999 Canberra Area Theatre Awards.

She subsequently produced/and or directed 'Reedy River' - 2001, 'Blood Yellow' - 2003 and 2004, 'Fawlty Towers' - 2007 and 2009, 'Cabaret' - 2006, 'Chicago' - 2013, 'The Wizard of Oz' - 2015 and 'Chitty Chitty Bang Bang' - 2018.

When directing her mottos are; "Always have a plan B" and "Give the audience what they expect".

Robyn believes that if and audience pays to see 'The Wizard of Oz', or 'Fawlty Towers', or 'Chitty Chitty Bang Bang' they want to see what they remember from movies or television. To the best of her ability she always tries to deliver on this aim.

When not producing or directing Robyn has performed in almost every other show staged by the M&D.

Robyn was made a life member of the Cowra M&D on 23 August 2008. In 2016 Robyn and Lawrance were jointly awarded the Canberra Area Theatre Award's prestigious Silver CAT for 'Significant contribution to theatre over many years'.

Away from amateur theatre Robyn has worked for Kibblers and its successor Bunnings for almost 20 years, most of that time in the garden section. She sometimes averages more than 30,000 steps per day