At least once in their life….
I went to see Calendar Girls The Musical last night and today, I am full of the joys of life!
What a feel-good, heart-breaking, life-affirming rollercoaster ride of a show it is. One that will keep you entertained from start to finish and send you out the door with a purpose.
We all know the story – the Women’s Institute (a well-meaning but rather stuffy, archaic organisation for ladies), is rocked to the core when a Yorkshire branch decide to make their own nude calendar, to raise funds for a sofa in the relatives room of the local hospital, following the death of John Clarke.
The husband of the main character and everyone’s go-to guy, ‘Clarkey’ was deeply loved by all and so somehow, the jump from this mismatched group of females living very ‘normal’ lives seems absolutely and perfectly acceptable. In fact, by the time they finally did strip down for their photos (extremely tastefully of course), I think every woman in the audience would have joined in if they were asked!
Because it wasn’t about nudity, vanity or attention-seeking, it was about celebrating life, the beautiful phases of womanhood, and honouring the memory of a soul who shone so brightly every day he was alive, that nothing short of a fabulous fireworks display would serve to honour his memory.
And these ladies gave a fireworks display alright.
A true story, the writing – and not to mention the music by Gary Barlow – was so cleverly executed that we saw each woman’s story from a different dimension. I particularly enjoyed the teenagers and their take on the proceedings – how they learned from the generation above that life is not about perfection, it’s about making mistakes, gloriously awful mistakes sometimes, and handling them with bravery and dignity.
It’s about being you and loving those in your life, for exactly who they are.
I spoke to some of the fabulous cast members after the show and was really moved by the words of one gentleman who said, that when you perform to a group of women like this, something magical happens around halfway through – like a coming together of souls. A palpable energy fills the room – and that is something I truly believe.
When women support women, something incredible occurs.
If you get the chance to see this show ladies, do it. You won’t regret it.