Blackpool's Lydia May Ashton looks forward to a Horrible Christmas
PUBLISHED: 00:00 05 December 2019
Lydia May Ashton comes home to Blackpool with Horrible Histories.
Most people see the festive period as something to look forward to. Not Lydia May Ashton. This talented Blackpool actor is hoping for a truly horrible Christmas. She isn't hoping to give Ebeneezer Scrooge a run for his money, of course. She is starring in Horrible Christmas, a festive production from the crew behind the hugely popular Horrible Histories franchise.
'It's such an exciting time, I can't wait,' enthused Lydia. 'They are such comedic plays that are a lot of fun. I'll be working with some extremely talented people, I was blown away when I realised I'd got the job.
'It's a dream come true for me to be doing such a brilliant production, at Christmas and in my home town.'
The show's tale is set around Christmas coming under threat from a jolly man dressed in red and it's up to one young boy to save the day. There are Victorian villains and Medieval monks, Puritan parties and Tudor treats and the sharing of tales of well-known historical names including Charles Dickens, Oliver Cromwell, King Henry VIII and St Nicholas.
'It's a real celebration of Christmas, although the name doesn't necessarily make you think it at first,' said Lydia. 'It's real fun and I hope audiences will love it.'
Lydia, who has also been touring nursing homes around the country singing to residents as a way to give back to the community, has always loved to perform and entertain. She studied Musical Theatre at the prestigious Hammond School in Chester and has since worked for Drama School London, hosting workshops for physical theatre and voice training. She has appeared in many semi-professional and professional productions as a dancer and was selected from a number of elite associates for the Royal Ballet.
Her most exciting project to date has been touring India with the Indian Premier League as a dancer for the Mumbai Indian Cricket Team. The experience not only meant she got to explore the country but she also performed in front of thousands of people.
'We went to eight different cities in two months,' said Lydia. 'It was very hard work with lots of training, sometimes in 50 degree heat, but it was such a wonderful time and to immerse myself in a totally different culture was fantastic. It was the best experience of my life and I couldn't be more grateful not only for the dancing but also for the travelling we got to do at the same time.'
Lydia is now focussed on rehearsals for Horrible Histories, her first professional acting job.
'I just can't wait to get started,' she said. 'It's such a wonderful thing for me. To be doing the acting I really want to do, and doing that at home is special. The cast have been so supportive and encouraging and to know I'll be performing in front of family and friends, too, is magical. The best Christmas ever.'
Horrible Christmas will be at the Opera House at Winter Gardens Blackpool from December 13th-29th.
Tickets, priced from £15, are available online from wintergardensblackpool.co.uk.