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Award-winning nativity returns after 20 year gap

By Lincolnshire Echo  |  Posted: November 08, 2012

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A modern Nativity story which won a West Lindsey playwright and his talented troupe a clutch of awards is being staged again – 20 years after it was first performed!

Kismet Theatre Company's new production Christ Mass first trod the boards in 1992.

The young thespians – led by young writer Mike Hatfield – stormed to a memorable triumph as members of the Gainsborough Theatre Company.

Christ Mass not only took five awards at the regional Skegness Theatre Festival, it went on to collect a prestigious 'gong' at the National All-Winners Festival at Flixstowe in Suffolk.

Now it is back under the Kismet banner, with a three-night run this month at Gainsborough United Reformed Church Hall.

Trent Valley Academy assistant principal Mr Hatfield and show director Kerry Greenwood are among a small group of originals returning for the 'repeat'.

They are joined by a cast of biblical characters including Mike's son Jack Hatfield as Isaac, Paddy Johnson (Abraham) Fred Otter (Noah), Barry Evans (Joseph), Adele Ibbitson (Mary), Jeanne Bain (Judith), Jonty Fotheringham (Satan) and Dawn Cowan (Gabriel).

"Christ Mass took the region by storm when first produced 20 years ago," said Kerry.

"A revival is well overdue. This is too good a show not to revisit and it's a great piece of entertainment.

"And this time we've got a fantastic setting in which to present the piece."

Better known locally as the John Robinson Memorial Hall, the church hall venue is experiencing its own revival thanks to recent refurbishment and ongoing fundraising.

"The show is a modern Nativity story, but in the tradition of the medieval mystery plays of old," said Mike. Working men's guilds would each produce their own versions of well-known Bible stories, creating a really entertaining, accessible type of theatre. We're taking the same approach, utilising the brilliant surroundings and using live music, comedy, drama, dance, spectacle and audience interaction.

"All this combined will create a unique show."

Christ Mass runs from Thursday to Saturday, November 29 to December 1, at 7.30pm. The company is offering free mulled wine and mince pies – and will run Christmas stalls from 6.45pm.

Tickets priced £8 and £6 concessions are available from the on-line Trinity Arts Centre box office at www.trinityarts.co.uk or by phone at 01427 676655.

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