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Russians, revolutionaries and twenty million roubles

Members of the cast from Harborough Drama Society rehearse their production of The Anastasia File at the Harborough Theatre. Pictured are Nigel Pierce, Gilly Cullup, Kyle Keal, Julia Mills, Viv Crowther, Peter Christer and Chris Mills.

Members of the cast from Harborough Drama Society rehearse their production of The Anastasia File at the Harborough Theatre. Pictured are Nigel Pierce, Gilly Cullup, Kyle Keal, Julia Mills, Viv Crowther, Peter Christer and Chris Mills.

A mystery surrounding the massacre of the Russian royal family by revolutionaries is explored in a new play at Harborough Theatre.

The Anastasia File is being performed by Harborough Drama Society at the Church Square venue from February 5 to 9.

The story follows the rumours that abounded in the aftermath of the murder of the Russian royal family by Bolsheviks in 1918 that one of the Czar’s young daughters had survived.

There were many claimants, all dismissed as bogus.

But when a young woman is rescued from a Berlin canal in 1920 after a failed suicide attempt, it seems Anastasia may have been found.

A German police inspector takes a particular interest in her case and sets about trying to establish her real identity.

Convinced she really is Anastasia, he sets about attempting to persuade her surviving relatives of his discovery.

But there is a problem in the form of twenty million roubles invested with the Bank of England by her father.

Everyone wants a share, and it would be better for some if Anastasia did not exist.

The play’s writer Royce Ryton is perhaps most famous for becoming the first playwright to put a serious portrayal of a living member of the British royal family on stage with Crown Matrimonial, about the Abdication crisis of 1936.

Harborough Drama Society’s production of The Anastasia File sees Viv Crowther play Anastasia, with Nigel Pierce as the inspector.

There are 32 other characters who make cameo appearances. These roles are shared by Peter Christer, Ginny Cullup, Kyle Keal, Julia Mills and Chris Mills.

The show’s director Arthur Aldrich said: “Through all the recent bad weather the cast are heading towards the opening night with great energy, enthusiasm and not a little skill.”

The show opens with an evening performance at 7.45pm on Tuesday, February 5.

Shows continue each evening at the same time until Saturday, February 9. There is also a matinee at 2.30pm on that Saturday.

Ticket prices range from £8 for the Tuesday and Wednesday performances to £10 later in the week.

They are available from the theatre box office between 9.30am and 11.30am on Tuesdays and Saturdays, online at www.harboroughtheatre.com or by calling 0844 8700887.

The theatre stands in Church Square, opposite St Dionysius Church and the Old Grammar School. A hearing loop and wheelchair access are available.

 

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