Ea­monn O’Neal

Macclesfield Express - - YOUR PICTURES -

ONE of my favourite venues has been in the news re­cently for a rather un­usual rea­son.

The Plaza The­atre in Stock­port is a mag­nif­i­cent build­ing which was opened more than 90 years ago as a cin­ema and va­ri­ety the­atre.

It is a beau­ti­ful Art-Deco build­ing which has been re­stored to the high­est qual­ity and has many of the orig­i­nal fea­tures.

It even has an or­gan which rises from the pit.

I’m used to watch­ing films and see­ing stage pro­duc­tions at The Plaza and I’ve even been on stage my­self a good num­ber of times with my brother-in-law Jimmy Wagg.

But must say I was sur­prised when I saw the

Itheatre had held its first fu­neral.

John Doona, from Chea­dle Hulme, died after a long bat­tle with can­cer and his wife, Heather, felt the Plaza would be a fit­ting place for his fu­neral.

His cof­fin was placed by the stage while, in true the­atri­cal style, his name was put up in lights out­side.

It was a fit­ting trib­ute to John be­cause he was pas­sion­ate about the­atre, was an in­spi­ra­tional drama teacher and one of the lead­ing au­thor­i­ties in teach­ing Shake­speare to young peo­ple.

The amaz­ingly var­ied events at the Plaza this month in­clude Dave Gest’s Soul Leg­ends Live, the clas­sic film Billy Liar, Only Fools and Boy­cie and a Hal­loween dou­ble bill. They cer­tainly work hard to keep us en­ter­tained.

I’ve al­ready got my tick­ets for the an­nual North­west Fes­ti­val of Re­mem­brance on Novem­ber 2.

This is a stir­ring af­ter­noon of mu­sic and songs from the wars and pays trib­ute to ser­vice per­son­nel from all con­flicts.

The Ash­ton-on-Mersey Show­band pro­vides the mu­sic and defy you not to be moved by it.

Jimmy Wagg and are back on The Plaza stage on Sun­day, Fe­bru­ary 8 with another char­ity show fea­tur­ing broad­caster Mike Sweeney and his band with Buzz Hawkins and The Brad­shaws top­ping the bill.

The tick­ets usu­ally sell out re­ally quickly so if you fancy com­ing along, con­tact the the­atre soon.

All the pro­ceeds this year are go­ing to St Ann’s Hospice.

II

●● The fu­neral of drama teacher John Doona, in­set, was held at Stock­port Plaza – with his cof­fin placed by the stage and his name in lights out­side

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