Glorious! by Peter Quilter to appear at Cessnock Performing Arts Centre on August 30

UPLIFTING: Diana McLean stars as Florence Foster Jenkins in Glorious, at Cessnock Performing Arts Centre on August 30. Picture: Chris Fotographik.
UPLIFTING: Diana McLean stars as Florence Foster Jenkins in Glorious, at Cessnock Performing Arts Centre on August 30. Picture: Chris Fotographik.

The hilarious true story of the world’s worst opera singer, Florence Foster Jenkins, will be brought to life on stage at Cessnock Performing Arts Centre on Wednesday, August 30.

Peter Quilter’s play Glorious! inspired the 2016 film Florence Foster Jenkins, which starred Meryl Streep in the title role.

A West End and world-wide hit, Glorious! was nominated for a Laurence Olivier Award – Best New Comedy (2005) and has been seen by two million plus people across six continents.

The play is being presented in Australia by Hit Productions, and stars Diana McLean (best known for The Young Doctors, Number 96 and All Saints) in the lead role.

Glorious! is not just a very funny play; it is also a touching and uplifting story about living your dreams.

In the 1940s Jenkins was the singer everyone wanted to see perform live in New York.

The enthusiastic soprano was known as ' the first lady of the sliding scale', and – surrounding herself by devoted friends almost as eccentric as she – this deliciously happy and delusional woman paid scant attention to her critics and would screech and warble to her audiences, most falling about with laughter.

As a child Jenkins had been a prodigious piano player, but had suffered an arm injury that hampered her playing.

After eloping into what became a failed marriage and eventually becoming the beneficiary of her father's estate, Jenkins resumed her music pursuits by beginning voice lessons at age 40.

Despite never gaining proficiency as a singer, Jenkins made her debut at Carnegie Hall on October 25, 1944. 

This heart-warming comedy moves from Jenkins's charity recitals and lavish balls, through to her very odd recording sessions and her ultimate performance triumph at New York’s Carnegie Hall, incorporating her wonderfully colourful relationships along the way.

The show will start at 8pm. Tickets are available from the CPAC box office, by phone on 4993 4266 or online at www.cessnockperformingartscentre.com.au.

WIN: For your chance to win a double pass to the show, email your name and phone number with ‘Glorious’ in the subject line to cessnock@fairfaxmedia.com.au. Entries close at 11.59pm Thursday, August 24.