Performers dare to bare in aid of charity which helped cast member deal with cancer diagnosis - The Rugby Observer

Performers dare to bare in aid of charity which helped cast member deal with cancer diagnosis

Editorial Correspondent 26th May, 2023 Updated: 26th May, 2023   0

BRAVE performers will dare to bare next month when a Rugby production company stages a popular musical – in aid of a charity which helped a cast member when she was diagnosed with cancer.

Five Star Theatre is staging its production of Gary Barlow’s musical Calendar Girls as part of the company’s 15th anniversary programme.

Ticket sales for the show will raise funds for Bowel Cancer UK, in tribute to the support the charity provided to the company’s own choreographer, Kerstin Awang, when she was diagnosed with bowel cancer in December 2019.

Kerstin, who has worked with the award-winning theatre company for almost a decade, is making her stage debut in the show.

She said: “When the opportunity to produce Calendar Girls became a reality, I couldn’t have been happier. I knew it would be a very emotive show which would hit very close to home personally, but it was an opportunity not to be missed.

“Almost everyone is affected by cancer either directly or indirectly, and here was an unmissable opportunity to combine this incredible production with my ongoing fundraising endeavours and to keep awareness of bowel cancer in the public eye.

“I am very proud of what we are achieving with Calendar Girls and it’s going to be a beautiful, not-to-be missed production.”

The musical is based on a true story, which was adapted into a film in 2003.

Based in the Yorkshire village of Knapely, it follows a group of women whose lives are shattered when Annie’s husband, John, dies from cancer at an early age.

Annie’s best friend, Chris, hits upon the idea of printing a calendar featuring some of the members of the Women’s Institute, discreetly posing nude while engaged in traditional WI activities, in order to raise funds to purchase a comfortable sofa for the visitors’ lounge in the hospital where John was treated.

The idea is initially met with great scepticism, but Chris and Annie eventually convince a team of women to participate in the project.

The production runs from Thursday June 8 to Saturday June 10 at The Benn Hall.

Tickets, priced from £16 to £18, can be purchased online at or by calling the Box Office on 01788 533719. Five Star Theatre will donate £1 from each ticket sold to Bowel Cancer UK.


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