Hit one-woman theater show on the way back to Preston


Janelle Thompson stars in Bessie, Alone at Midnight

Of them Preston the stars return to town with their thrilling, award-winning new play.


Actress Janelle Thompson returns home as the star of Bessie’s solo show, At Midnight Alone, which has been a huge hit with audiences across the UK this year.

Thompson trained in theater at the University of Central Lancashire and still lives in Preston. Recently, she won Best Newcomer at Birmingham Fest for her stunning performance as Bessie.

Janelle Thompson on stage as Bessie
Janelle Thompson recently won Best Newcomer at Birmingham Fest

The play’s author, Derek Martin, is also celebrating a return to the town where he lived when he wrote the play.

Martin moved to Preston when he was seven years old. He first acted and wrote sketches when he was a student at Fulwood High School, now Fulwood Academy.

He studied acting at Preston College, became more involved through the Preston Playhouse and wrote Bessie, At Midnight Alone while living in deep valley. Now he is an award-winning playwright with several successful tours.

Directed by Rhonwen McCormack, Bessie, At Midnight Alone comes to Ferrets Thursday, November 24.

Read more: A bid to save The Ferret could see Preston’s iconic venue become community property

Bessie is a prostitute waiting outside for a late client. Martin’s richly written screenplay jumps through the centuries, without being frozen in time or space.

Packed with tense drama and fiery Nordic spirit, Bessie engages with audiences, has conversations with various characters from her past, and undergoes a transformation in her understanding of her world, with a flamboyant kick at the end.

It is brought to Preston by Manchester-based theater company Blue Masque Theatre, following lively seasons at the Buxton Fringe Festival, Greater Manchester Fringe Festival and Birmingham Fest.

The show is organized by event organizer Garry Cook’s Enjoy the show organisation, which has brought 150 shows and events to Preston over the past six years.

Tickets are available from skidle.

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