THE Letterkenny Music and Drama Group are returning to the An Grianán Theatre once again to stage the fabulous award-winning ‘Calendar Girls The Musical’ from Tuesday November 29 until Saturday December 3 at 8pm nightly.
The smash hit musical is based on the 2003 film starring Helen Mirren and Julie Walters, which in turn was based on a true story.
The Drama Group produced the highly successful play version of Calendar Girls in 2012, returning in 2013 to popular demand, packing the houses each night and raising thousands of euro for local cancer charities. The group hopes to do the same this time. Be advised though that the last time the shows were booked out long before the first show was staged so remember to book early.
Based on a true story about the women of the Rylstone Women’s Institute in North Yorkshire which produced a calendar each year based around scenes of the Yorkshire Dales, this hilarious and often poignant version of the story is crafted together using the powerful music of Gary Barlow and Tim Firth.
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 blast away all preconceptions and persuade their fellow WI members to pose with them for a nude calendar, with a little help from hospital porter and amateur photographer Lawrence and a few carefully positioned props.
In the calendar each woman is posing very tastefully behind a different task that the Women’s Institute teaches their members, such as making bread rolls, knitting, planting flowers, and playing the piano.
The original calendar in fact became a worldwide sensation, out-selling even those of Britney Spears and Cindy Crawford. The women were even flown to America to be interviewed by Jay Leno. The calendar has made more than three million pounds so far for Leukaemia Research.
In keeping with the theme of the show and as an opportunity to raise even more money for charity, Letterkenny Music and Drama Group have produced a calendar of their own, which will be on sale at An Grianán Theatre and in other local businesses with all profits going to Cancer Care West and to the Donegal Hospice.
The true story of the Calendar Girls launched a global phenomenon, a million copycat calendars, a record breaking movie, stage play and this musical written by Tim Firth and Gary Barlow which coined the term “craughing” – the act of crying and laughing at the same time.
Directed once again by the ever-reliable Pluincead O’Fearraigh with musical direction by Denise Roper, the Calendar Girls themselves are played by Ciara Gallagher, Rachel Akkoc, Geraldine Galligan, Mary Lane, Mary Harte and Maire McGinley. They are joined on stage by other well-known faces to Letterkenny audiences including Martin Gallen, Rodney McKeague, Tina Higgins, Kate Doherty and a fantastic ensemble of singers and actors who bring this warm story to life on stage.
Tickets can be booked online at www.angrianan.com or on 0749120777.