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“Gobsmackingly good.” The Times ****

Music by Steve Brown
Book & Lyrics by Steve Brown and Justin Greene
From the book by Viv Nicholson and Stephen Smith

Mon 27 Sep 2010 - Mon 08 Nov 2010

Winner of 2010 TMA award for Best Musical
Kirsty Hoiles (young Viv) TMA award for Best Supporting Actress in a Musical.

“Another summer, another terrific small-scale musical revival from The Watermill.”
The Guardian ****

"...a gloriously warm, in-yer-face revival that fits the intimate Watermill like a glove.” What’s On Stage *****

“Written from the heart by the lead character herself, this touching story is as relevant today as it was in 1961 when Viv Nicholson won the Pools.” The Stage

Following its sensational run at The Watermill last year, this award-winning production returns before touring to theatres around the UK.

Scraping by on seven quid a week with her husband and three kids in a tiny terraced house in Castleford, Yorkshire, Viv Nicholson’s life was as near rock bottom as it could get. Until that day in 1961 when Viv borrowed money from her Mam to play the Pools and she was catapulted from obscurity to fame with the biggest win ever - £152,319 (£5 million today). From rags to riches and back to rags again, the extraordinary musical journey of a brash and naïve, northern lass.

Reactions from audience members...

“I laughed so much it hurt, yet also found it very moving”.

“Wow wow wow!! I laughed, cried, and didn't want it to end.”

“I will be recommending it to everyone - and am planning to come back and see it again!”

“The vitality, versatility and talent of the players left me speechless. What more could anyone want from a night out?”

Click on the 'View movie' link above to see an extract from the show.



28 September
Guildford Yvonne Arnaud Theatre
Box office: 01483 440000

5 October 
Oxford Playhouse
Box office: 01865 305305

12 October
Salford, The Lowry
Box office: 0870 1112000

19 October
Leeds West Yorkshire Playhouse
Box office: 0113 213 7700

26 October
Cheltenham Everyman
Box office: 01242 572573

2 November
Richmond Theatre
Box office: 0870 0606651

9 November
Ipswich The New Wolsey
Box office: 01473 295900

Please note that this production contains strong language and there may be smoking on stage during the performance.

Directed and choreographed by Craig Revel Horwood
Musical Supervisor and musical arrangements by Sarah Travis
Designed by Diego Pitarch
Lighting designed by Nick Richings
Sound designed by Clement Rawling
Associate Director Robin Colyer