Steel Magnolias to be performed on Sunderland stage

The cast of Steel Magnolias; from left to right: Sinead Linsley, Olivia Bowern, Anna Snell, Helen Bowie, Chloe Mendez, Julie Carney
The cast of Steel Magnolias; from left to right: Sinead Linsley, Olivia Bowern, Anna Snell, Helen Bowie, Chloe Mendez, Julie Carney
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The play which spawned a hit film starring Julia Roberts and Dolly Parton will run in Sunderland next week.

Steel Magnolias will be performed at Royalty Theatre, off Chester Road, from Monday until May 21.

It follows the success of the community theatre’s previous production, The Vagina Monologues, which was also centred around powerful female characters.

Perhaps best known for the 1989 film adaptation starring Julia Roberts and Dolly Parton, Robert Harling’s play follows the lives of six women in a small town in Louisiana, who meet at Truvy’s Beauty Spot every Saturday for a cut and a catch-up.

Amongst the group is put-upon M’Lynn, her vivacious daughter Shelby, former first lady Clairee and curmudgeon Ouiser. Together with love-starved owner Truvy and her shy, religious assistant Annelle, the ladies gather to digest their lives and loves.

The Royalty play stars Sinead Linsley, Olivia Bowern, Anna Snell, Helen Bowie, Chloe Mendez and Julie Carney.

Director Lorna Breeze said: “When given the opportunity to direct this play, I jumped at the chance – what better than a play with strong female characters, which shows the bond between friends and how friends can be the most important people around you?

“There’s humour, sadness and many laughs along the way, and this play shows how a group of women can be as delicate as flowers, yet as tough as steel.”

•Steel Magnolias is at The Royalty Theatre from May 16-21 at 7.30pm each evening. Tickets are £8 (£6.50 concessions), with a two-for-one deal for on-the-door tickets on Tuesday, from www.ticketsource.co.uk/royaltytheatre or on 0333 666 3366.