It's a Wonderful Life, as previously reported on these pages, is the new musical which receives its world première at the New Wolsey Theatre, Ipswich on 10 September. The co-production with Avalon Promotions is based on the Frank Capra film of the same name and has a large cast. There are 17 adult actors and two teams of children with seven in each. These will perform in ota.

The story concerns George Bailey, a small-town businessman contemplating suicide as he faces not just bankruptcy but a sense that all his hope of an adventurous life elsewhere have been frustrated through circumstances not of his own making. Or so he belives, until his guardian angel steps in to show him the wider picture. A case perhaps of not seeing the wood for the trees.

Peter Rowe, the New Wolsey's artistic supremo, directs the adaptation of the original screenplay by Spend, Spend, Spend author Steve Brown. George is played by Paul Thornley, the angel by Jo Servi and Mary – first George's boyhood sweetheart and later his wife – by Helen Anker. His parents areKerry Washington and Michael Fenton Stevens and the local big-wig, with a finger in every apple pie, is played by Paul Leonard.