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NOW we’ve moved past the spooks and ghouls of Hallowe’en, there’s definitely a more festive feel at the Little this week as Maghull Musical Theatre Company present White Christmas.
The famous musical opens tomorrow (Wednesday, November 7) and runs until Saturday, November 10 with both a matinée and evening performance giving you two chances to enjoy this wonderful show.
This classic tale, brought to the big screen in 1954, is a real family affair for the company as well as the audience.
Director Ian Culshaw first approached Maghull MTC in 1992 when he brought his children to audition for their production of The Sound of Music.
His son Neil made the cut but his daughter Sarah was not successful.
Ian helped out backstage for the show and was persuaded to perform the following year as they needed more Guys to play opposite some Dolls.
His wife Gill came along to help at rehearsals and was eventually persuaded to tread the boards in 2004.
Undeterred by not being a Von Trapp, in 1995 their daughter Sarah made the cast of Annie Get Your Gun and has never looked back.
She has had multiple award nominations for her wonderful choreography and takes this role again for White Christmas following her lead role on stage in Thoroughly Modern Millie earlier this year.
In 2002 Eric Fletcher joined the society for their production of Annie.
Sarah and Eric became friends then over time fell in love.
Eric proposed on stage and they were married in 2015.
Sarah and Eric have recently grown one Rose, their daughter, but Alexandra Ashall, who plays Betty Haynes, has dozens – as she owns and manages her own florist, Alexandra Mays of Maghull.
This is her tenth year with MMTC. She met her husband Lee, who takes the role of Bob Wallace, offstage but persuaded him to join her in 2011.
In a delightful coincidence this show was also Guys and Dolls and the Ashalls also tied the knot in 2015.
Their real-life chemistry is an added bonus to their beautiful performances.
Alex McKillop and Sophie Grant play the other principal couple, Phil Davis and Judy Haynes.
Unlike Lee and Alexandra their relationship is confined to the stage although Alex’s real-life fiancée Alice also appears in the show as Rita.
Adam Dutch is there as musical director to make sure they’re all in perfect harmony.
Come and see for yourself and ease yourself into the festive season with this fabulous, feel-good show.
White Christmas runs from Wednesday to Saturday, November 7-10.
Tickets are on sale at the Little Theatre box office from 11am each day – ring 01704 530521/530460.
Lee and Alexandra Ashall, Sophie Grant and Alex McKillop
Ian Culshaw, Sarah Fletcher and Adam Dutch