I went to see Calendar Girls The Musical and it was an incredible and funny display of human courage and tenacity.

Inspired by a true story, Calendar Girls The Musical follows the story of a group of Women’s Institute members from a small Yorkshire village on their mission to raise money to buy a sofa for Skipton hospital in memory of John Clarke – beloved husband of member Annie.

The musical features original songs from Gary Barlow and Tim Firth that are quite varied in tone, with memorable numbers including “Dare” “Yorkshire” and “Kilimanjaro” being my firm favourites.

News Shopper: The cast performing the song YorkshireThe cast performing the song Yorkshire (Image: Jack Merriman)

It features a star cast including former Eastenders star Laurie Brett as Annie and Maureen Nolan as Ruth.

The show features side-splitting comedy that had me and all the audience laughing from jokes, the odd swear word or two, and honest conversations about womanhood, body image and age.

Laurie Brett gives an authentic portrayal of grief as Annie begins to process the loss of her husband and what life will look like in her new reality.

Samantha Seager animated the show with her gregarious and larger-than-life performance of Chris, as she worked to encourage the group of women to pose for the camera with currant buns covering their cleavage.

News Shopper: The show features an all-star castThe show features an all-star cast (Image: Jack Merriman)

Maureen Nolan’s performance as Ruth was both hilarious but also heart-warming at times. At many points I was deeply moved at how she really showed Ruth’s battle with low self-esteem throughout the performance.

But her end performance, as a drunken Ruth fuelled with Vodka finally makes the brave move to show all, had me applauding and cheering.

News Shopper: Maureen Nolan as RuthMaureen Nolan as Ruth (Image: Alex Harvey-Brown)

Lyn Paul gives a very believable performance of retired teacher Jessie, but with no less authority, with an inspiring rendition of “What Age Expects”.

The show was a fantastic reminder of community spirit as the women quite literally bare all to raise money for a worthy cause.

It was a bold, funny, and yet incredibly sensitive performance, weaving song, humour and emotion together.

News Shopper: Lyn Paul as JessieLyn Paul as Jessie (Image: Alex Harvey-Brown)

All in all, Calendar Girls the Musical was a deeply moving, funny and wonderfully honest depiction of the trials of life told with song.

Calendar Girls The Musical will be playing at Bromley’s Churchill Theatre until Saturday, January 13 with tickets starting from £22.