Leading playwright Jim Cartwright’s first play for more than a decade is coming to Thornton – and it’s only the second time it’s been performed in the UK.
The writer, best known for penning The Rise and Fall of Little Voice, has given his permission for Poulton Drama to perform A Christmas Fair, his only play in the last 12 years.
It is being performed at Thornton Little Theatre this week, until Saturday, beginning each night at 7.30pm.
As its title suggests, the poignant comedy centres around a Northern village fair, and the web of sagas, secrets and stories that unfold around the festive tombola, punchbowl, and Santa’s grotto.
It’s the first time the play has been performed since its debut in 2012, but the award-winning local drama group say they are more than up to the task, under the direction of Colin Johnson.
Roger Lloyd-Jones takes on the role of the caretaker with a dark secret, while Cathy D’Arcy is Veronica, the stalwart of the Women’s Institute whose life isn’t quite what it seems.
Stuart Holden is the vicar with an unconventional past, and Laura Cullen – who won a NODA award for her portrayal of Alice Tinker in The Vicar of Dibley – plays Lucy, the village girl with small ambitions and a big imagination.
Newcomer Jack Bell plays Johnny, the tortured writer from the Welsh valleys who arrives in the village just in time for Christmas.
Hilarious and sometimes heartbreaking stories emerge, young love seems imminent and the caretaker just wants to go home, while Veronica needs all hands on deck to make her Christmas Fair a success.
Audiences are even invited to come forward and take part in the very real Christmas Fair during the interval.
Tickets for the production are available on (01253) 200737.