Our wonderful Director, Elsie Kelly, is due to step down next month, following an amazing 46-year career with our society.
Having Directed her first show (‘Oliver!’) for BOST in 1974, our award-winning Director has gone on to direct over 90 shows and concerts with our society, as well as directing professional pantomimes across the north west starring artists including Les Dawson, Windsor Davis, Melvyn Hayes and Norman Vaughan.
Elsie will be retiring after our next production of ‘Hello Dolly’, which is being performed at the Liverpool Empire theatre from 16-18th May.
Elsie said: “’Hello,Dolly!’ is a charming musical about a wonderful matchmaker and it’s a super show to go out on a high with.
“I’ve actually Directed ‘Hello Dolly’ three times before for BOST, the first time being only my second show as the company’s Director. The production starred Meg Johnson in the title role, who is now well known for playing Pearl Ladderbanks in ITV’s Emmerdale.”
Elsie is no stranger to the world of television herself, first coming to prominence as Mrs Tardebigge in the original ‘Crossroads’ and later appearing in ‘Skins’, ‘The Famous Five’ and ‘Ghosthunters’.
Most recently, she has become best known for playing Noreen Maltby in the hugely successful ITV series ‘Benidorm’, playing Johnny Vegas’ Mum, for all 10 series of the show.
Reflecting on her time in Benidorm, Elsie said: “ I really admire writer Derren Litten as he delivered exactly what he set out to do.
“Even now, people come up to me in the street to ask why the sitcom ended. It was a great show and I had a good cast around me.”
The past decade has been a particularly busy time for Elsie, combining her acting contracts alongside her directing work for BOST. Musicals under her leadership for us include Disney’s ‘Beauty and the Beast’, ‘The Full Monty’ and ‘Sweeney Todd’, showcasing the breadth of her musical theatre expertise.
Reflecting on her time with BOST, Elsie said: “I’m incredibly privileged to have worked with such a responsive company.
“I feel like we’ve grown together and I’m lucky to have produced such a high standard of shows with them.”
Meryl Langford, BOST’s Chairman, added: “Elsie’s contribution to BOST’s success is incalculable.
“We would like to thank her for her loyal and long-term service to the society and there is no doubt that she will be leaving an enormous legacy behind her.”
Make sure you catch Elsie’s last production with BOST! ‘Hello, Dolly!’ runs from 16-18th May at Liverpool Empire Theatre. Tickets start form £13 with discounts available. Book here!