Musical stars set to entertain guests at Banchory hotel

There’s no rest for the North-east musical theatre stars this Christmas, as they take time out of their festive break to perform a one-off show at the Banchory Lodge Hotel to boost funds for the Bling Fling.

The showbiz Sunday lunch brings together the talents of Les Miserables star Ian Pirie, Phantom of the Opera star Richard Knight, Guildford musical theatre student Ailsa Davidson and Mel Allen of Aberdeen Youth Music Theatre, accompanied by top Aberdeen singing teacher and choreographer Rhonda Scott as musical director.

The lunch - with red carpet reception followed by Sunday roast, songs around the grand piano and afternoon tea, will raise money for the Bling Fling charities, Breast Cancer Research at Aberdeen University and Archway.

West End star Ian Pirie dreamed up the event along with Bling Fling co-founders Sonja Rasmussen and Janine Davies and Banchory Lodge owner Carol Fowler.

Ian, who grew up in Aberdeen and began his working life as a welder in the Silver City before heading for London to audition for Jesus Christ Superstar in 1996, said: “I was coming home for Hogmanay and felt I wanted to do something for the Bling Fling, in memory of my mum, who died of cancer a few years ago.”

Ian is travelling to the north-east with his new wife, actress Victoria Donovan, to spend Hogmanay with his dad.

Ian has worked for National theatre of Scotland, performing in Aberdeen several times with Black Watch and Sunshine on Leith, as well as The RSC and The Globe. In January he can be seen in the movie of Les Miserables.

Sonja Rasmussen, who co-founded the Bling Fling after a battle with breast cancer four years ago, said: “It’s not often that we get the chance to see performers of this calibre at charity events, and I’m sure this is going to be a real Christmas treat.”

Bling Fling’s Musical Lunch With Stars from The West End Stage is at Banchory Lodge Hotel on Sunday 30th December at 12.30pm. Tickets, with drinks, meal and afternoon tea included, are £40 each. All proceeds will go to the Bling Fling Charities.