Pat Junnila

Calendar Girls offers a revealing look at fame and friendship

Surrey Little Theatre’s 2015-16 season opens with stage adaptation of box office champion.

A British box office phenomenon that charmed audiences around the world comes to the Surrey Little Theatre (SLT) stage next week.

Calendar Girls is Tim Firth’s stage adaptation of the movie and true story of a group of middle-aged women who pose nude for a calendar to raise money for a worthy cause, earning them fame – and fraying friendships.

The story is set in Knapeley, Yorkshire, where Annie Clark has just lost her husband to cancer. Inspired by his speech to the local Women’s Institute, Clark (Halia Hirniak) and her best friend Chris (Margaret Shearman) set out to make a fundraising calendar that becomes an immediate sensation.

Directed by Simon Challenger, the SLT production stars a large ensemble cast, including Surrey’s Laurie Kortschak and Melanie Minty..

“Calendar Girls is a wonderful play about relationships,” says Challenger. “It’s a story about friendship, love, tragedy and the ability of the human spirit to transcend adversity.”

The show is about much more than the calendar and the photographs, revealing how events can shape their lives in ways they never thought possible, Challenger says.

“There are truths about the human condition that touch each and every character in this play and these truths are revealed to us by the work of the wonderful cast,” he says. “Every actor in this cast has brought something special to their role.”

Calendar Girls runs Oct. 22 to Nov. 21, Thursdays to Saturdays at 8 p.m., along with three Sunday matinées Nov. 1, 8 and 15, at 2 p.m.

Tickets are half price on Oct. 22 and 23. See www.surrreylittletheatre.com for more information. Tickets at available at brownpapertickets.com or reservations@surreylittletheatre.com or 604-576-8451.

Surrey Little Theatre is located at 7027 184 St.