Holliston Actress Stars in “Calendar Girls”

When Annie’s husband John dies of leukemia, she and her best friend Chris resolve to raise money for a new settee in the local hospital’s waiting room. They manage to persuade four fellow Women’s Institute members to pose nude with them for an “alternative” calendar. The news of the women’s charitable venture spreads like wildfire, and hordes of press soon descend on their small English village. The calendar is a success, but Chris and Annie’s friendship is put to the test under the strain of their new-found fame. Directed by Marianne Phinney and based on a true story, Calendar Girls by Tim Firth is the Walpole Footlighters next production.

The production was in rehearsal for performances in May 2020 when the pandemic forced a postponement. Rehearsals resumed twenty months later with most of the original cast returning. Director Marianne Phinney says, “I’m excited to return to this show and bring it to the Footlighters stage after having to suspend rehearsals in March 2020. The cast and I are looking forward to sharing this true story with our audiences. I’m especially proud of the actors who, like the original Calendar Girls, have agreed to pose nude behind teapots, flowers, afghans, and trays of pastry! “

Holliston actress Cindy bell stars as Annie in the Walpole Footlighters’ production of Calendar Girls.  Photo credit: Dan Busler Photography

Holliston actress Cindy Bell plays the role of Annie Clarke, the woman whose husband’s death sets the entire play in motion. A veteran of many productions both at Footlighters and other theaters, Cindy played a different role in an earlier production at one of those other theaters. She’s thrilled to be playing the role of Annie, one of the women who poses for the calendar. How is she feeling about that photo shoot scene? “Nervous and excited; I think it’s such an important scene and such an important opportunity to bond with the other calendar girls.  I trust the director to make it safe for us.”

Performances of Calendar Girls are at the Walpole Footlighters Playhouse at 2 Scout Road,  in East Walpole. The production contains mature language and partial nudity. Evening performances will be on February 4, 5, 11, 12, 18 and 19 at 8:00 PM. There will also be matinee performances on February 13 and 20 at 2:00 PM. Patrons will be required to show proof of vaccination for admission and will be required to wear medical grade masks at all times while in the theater. Concessions will not be sold. Seating is limited to 160 to allow for space between parties, and the theater will be disinfected after each performance. Tickets are $22 and all seats are reserved.  Patrons are urged not to attend if they are not feeling well on the day of their performance, and tickets will be exchanged or refunded with no questions asked. Discounts are available for groups of 10 or more. To purchase tickets, call the Box Office at 508-668-8446 or purchase online at www.footlighters.com. Calendar Girls is presented by arrangement with Concord Theatricals on behalf of Samuel French, Inc. www.concordtheatricals.com

Calendar Girls by Tim Firth, based on the Miramax motion picture by Juliette Towhidi and Tim Firth. This production is sponsored in part by the Walpole Cultural Council, a local agency, which is supported by the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency.

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