Christmas show to be dedicated to Julie

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A new, updated version of the heart-warming festive show My Big Fat Belfast Christmas will take centre stage at Theatre at The Mill this December.

The new script was completed by Caroline Curran and Julie Maxwell, shortly before her untimely death, which stunned the Northern Ireland theatre community.

Theatre at the Mill’s Christmas show is dedicated to the life and work of the much loved actress, who tragically died in August.

“I still can’t find the words to say about it,” said Caroline, who is still coming to terms with the loss of her writing partner and dear friend Julie. “It is so tragic and so shocking. I know its real but sometimes I think she’s just late. There are moments I go to say something to her and realise she’s isn’t there. But she is still kind of here because her words are still being spoken.”

Caroline and Julie, who were friends for 15 years, came together earlier this year to revamp the original play, which was completed just two days before Julie’s tragic death. “Julie and I wrote the show in 2015 and it was out first time writing together,” explained Caroline. “Now with four years more experience we know what worked, what didn’t so we wanted to take the original script and bring it right up date. People may have seen the original but there will be a new cast, new scenes and hopefully they will enjoy it just as much.

“We are trying to keep Julie’s memory alive and keep her talent going, that is what I need to do for her, I need to show everyone how brilliant she was.”

Regular cast members Jimmy Doran and Abby McGibbon are back to play their original parts along with Caroline but they will be joined by exciting newcomers Bernadette Brown and Matthew Sharpe. The production is directed by Fionnuala Kennedy who directed the original version back in 2015.

My Big Fat Belfast Christmas is an hilarious and typically brash reworking of the Nativity Story, showing the ups and downs of spending Christmas with the ones you love, as everyone struggles to keep their secrets from the rest of the family. And rumour has it there may even be a rap about Stormont thrown into the mix.

“We set out to capture the madness and mayhem and the warmth of a Belfast family Christmas,” added Caroline.”Julie loved this time of year with all the family rituals and there are lots of little touches of her own family traditions in the script. I hope it reflects her warmth and unique personality.”

To book contact the Box Office on 028 9034 0202 or go to www.theatreatthemill.com