Calendar Girls

26th-29th July 2023
Ballard School

story by:

Tim Firth

directed by:

Lyn Lockyer

What's it about?

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 WI members 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 Yorkshire 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.

This amateur production is presented by special arrangement from Samuel French Ltd, a Concord Theatricals Company.

Want to get involved?

Script read-through: Tuesday 24th January 2023
at 7:30pm at Ballard PAC.
Auditions: Tuesday 7th February 2023 at
7:30pm and Sunday 12th February 2023 at
5:00pm, Ballard PAC.
Rehearsals will be on Monday and Wednesday
evenings with the occasional Sunday. Also, as
always, it can be a pretty heavy commitment
during performance week and the week
before, to ensure the play is ready for a paying
audience.
About the play
Tim Firth’s Calendar Girls is a popular piece of theatre that is warm-hearted,
spirited, inspirational, touching and humorous.
The death of a much-loved husband prompts a group of ordinary women in a
small Yorkshire Women’s Institute to do an extraordinary thing. Blasting away all
the preconceptions of what it is like to belong to a Women’s Institute, and with
the help of the local hospital porter as their photographer, they decide to do an
artistic nude calendar to raise money to buy a settee for the local hospital waiting
room as a memorial for John.
Upturning preconceptions is a dangerous business and none of them expect the
emotional and personal ramifications, but gradually the making of the fabulous
and funny calendar brings each woman to unexpectedly bloom.
Tim Firth’s notes on nudity
As in the best traditions of vaudevillian fan dances, the art of the play’s nudity lies
in what is withheld. The choreography of this sequence is best described as
‘fabulous concealment’. Should we see anything we oughtn’t the whole scene will
deflate like a souffle on which the oven door has been opened too quickly.

3

Cast list
The “girls” (will be required for most rehearsals):
CHRIS – best friends with Annie, married to Rod
ANNIE – best friends with Chris, married to John
CORA
CELIA
RUTH
JESSIE
Supporting roles:
MARIE – Chair of the WI (Act 1, Scene 1,2,3 and Act 2, Scene 4)
LADY CRAVENSHIRE – local dignitary, judges the cake competition (Act 1, Scene 3)
BRENDA HULSE – speaker for the WI (Act 1, Scene 1)
ELAINE – Works at the health spa, having an affair with Ruth’s husband (Act 2,
Scene 6)
JOHN – married to Annie (Act 1, Scene 1,2,3)
ROD – married to Chris (Act 1, Scene 2,3,6 and Act 2 Scene 5)
LAWRENCE – porter at the hospital, takes the photographs (Act 1, Scene 5,6)
LIAM – director of the soap advert (Scene 6)
Costumes – the play requires a large amount of costume changes.
Props – there are quite a lot of exciting props required, not difficult but plentiful!
If anyone wants a read of the script beforehand, please contact Lyn on
lynlockyer@ymail.com or 07787 942459
Anyone who is cast will need to be a member of New Forest Players.