Wednesday 9 January 2019

Calendar Girls The Musical

Those of you with marvellous memory may remember I went to Leeds in August with Mayflower Theatre to see the dress rehearsal of Calendar Girls as it began its tour throughout the UK. I had such a wonderful time, adored the show and I couldn't wait for it to come to Southampton. 

It opened in Southampton last night and I went along to watch the show again in my home city. It's a story that I'm sure touches each of us in some way and the production is beautifully told with some laughs and all-important singing. 

The story of the Calendar Girls began in 1998 when John Baker, husband of Angela Baker, was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin lymphoma, a type of blood cancer. John sadly passed away after just a few months of treatment, but in the months following their loss, Angela and her friends set about creating the now infamous calendar as something for Angela to focus on and, also, to prove John wrong – he said they’d never do it! The group have since raised millions for Bloodwise, a blood cancer charity they've been associated with for a number of years.

Calendar Girls the Musical is the award-winning production by Gary Barlow and Tim Firth based on the true story of a group of ordinary ladies know as the calendar girls. The show brings to life the wonderful story of love, pain and determination turning it into a fabulous musical comedy. 

Watching it in Leeds for the first time was such a fun experience especially as we met with Tim Firth for an interview prior to the show. Gary Barlow was also in attendance but we didn't get to see him until the end. Calendar Girls stars Fern Britton, Anna-Jane Casey, Sara Crown, Karen Dunbar, Ruth Madoc, Rebecca Storm and Denise Welch who was wonderful and totally stole the show for me, I just adored her character and they way Denise bought her to life so much. 

The Southampton show was no different, the stage was once again brought to life by the warmth of friendship, the upbeat singing and of course, the beautiful sunflowers which are such a significant part of the story. I found myself smiling throughout the beautifully emotional show, the meaning behind it never too far from my thoughts, even as I sit and type this. 

It really is a must-see, grab your family, your friends and enjoy the spectacle that is Calendar Girls the Musical while it graces the stage in Southampton.

Calendar Girls the Musical is showing at Mayflower Theatre 8th January - 19th January with some showings still available. See website for more details:

Complimentary tickets for the purpose of review - please see disclaimer.
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