WIGAN Little Theatre’s poignant yet cheeky season finale is already a sell-out.
The company’s production of Calendar Girls takes to the stage this week and has already enjoyed a blaze of publicity.
And that is because the cast have themselves raised hundreds of pounds by producing a 2013 calendar with proceeds going to The Three Wishes fund, which is part of Wrightington, Wigan and Leigh’s Hospital’s Charity to support the infirmary’s oncology unit.
Unlike the original naked calendar, which was produced by WI ladies in Yorkshire, both male and females have taken part in semi-nude pictures celebrating the different departments that contribute towards putting on a production at the theatre.
Well now the show itself is here.
When Annie’s husband John dies of leukaemia, she and best friend Chris resolve to raise money for a new settee in the local hospital waiting room. They manage to persuade four fellow Women’s Institute members, Cora, Celia, Ruth and Jessie, to pose nude with them for an “alternative” calendar, with a little help from hospital porter and amateur photographer Lawrence.
The news of the women’s charitable venture spreads like wildfire, and hordes of press soon descend on the small village of Knapeley in the Dales. The calendar is a success, but Chris and Annie’s friendship is put to the test under the strain of their new-found fame.
The cast comprises Bridget Patmore, Linda DonBavand, Kathleen O’Leary, Rita Benson, Hilary Chadwick, Lesley Kellett, Maureen Schofield, Maggie Hall, Paul Dawson, Peter Hall, Maggie Hall, Iain Cash, Colette Kerwin and Anthony Beddows.
Based on a true story, the play is written by Tim Firth and directed by WLT’s Martin Green.
The show runs from June 19 to 29 but all seats are taken for every show.