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Calendar Girls receive great Moscow reception
10:00am Saturday 2nd March 2013 in News
The story of the Rylstone WI Calendar Girls is now captivating audiences in Russia.
Original Calendar Girls Angela Baker, Tricia Stewart, Lynda Logan, Ros Fawcett and Christine Clancy have just returned from Moscow where the Calendar Girls stage play was performed in front of an audience of 1,200.
They were invited to see the play being produced by a foundation raising money for a charity supporting children with cancer.
The one-nighter featured professional actors and production staff who gave their fees to the charity.
The play is based on a group of Rylstone WI members who shed their clothes to pose for an alternative calendar in aid of Leukaemia and Lymphoma Research.
It was inspired by national park officer John Baker – husband of Angela – who died from non-Hodgkins lymphoma in 1998. He was just 54.
The day before the Moscow performance the women were interviewed on the two top Russian television programmes to explain the cultural subtleties of the show for an British audience.
“The Russian people don’t have such a thing as Women’s Institutes so it took some explaining why it touched such a chord with UK audiences,” said Tricia.
“It was interesting to see they had changed the Victoria sponge to a chocolate cake. But they must have got it because the play received a great reception, they laughed throughout and stood up at the end.”
The play is being performed at a number of other venues in the country as one-nighters.
So far the Calendar Girls charity, launched in 1999 with the publication of the nude calendar, has raised about £4 million for Leukaemia and Lymphoma Research.