WITH a few more days still to run The Dukes has really hit a high note with its production of Cinderella - thanks in part to musical director Carol Donaldson.

Carol has written all the original music which appears in the critically acclaimed production at a time when she’s also worked on a Christmas television advert.

Carol was the choir director for Sainsbury’s festive advert which depicts the famous World War One Christmas truce and responsible for ensuring that the actors playing the soldiers gave a moving rendition of Silent Night in both English and German.

Carol has vast experience of working with choirs and runs the 100 strong Wrexham Community Choir; Open Voice in Manchester; Calder Valley Voices in Hebden Bridge and The Melody Macs for MacMillans, among others.

Cinderella is the third Dukes Christmas production involving Carol and her catchy tunes. The songs have proved a real hit with audiences, many accompanied by outrageous dance routines by the ugly sisters.

Performed in The Round at the Lancaster theatre, the fresh version of the classic fairytale has been adapted by Glossop-based writer Ian Kershaw.

Married to Julie Hesmondalgh, best known for playing one of the nation's favourite soap characters, Hayley Cropper in Coronation Street, Ian swapped acting many years ago for a role creating characters rather than portraying them, penning scripts for theatre and radio and being nurtured by the BBC Writers Academy.

Now an award-winning writer his modern take on Cinderella staged as Lancaster’s Dukes theatre's festive treat is gaining plenty of critical and audience acclaim.

“In the conventional story, I think Cinderella is quite a wet character but I wanted to write her as a girl who likes climbing trees and sees the world through the same eyes as my daughters who are 13 and 10,” continues Ian.

Although these days a well established stage, radio and television writer, Cinderella is the first Christmas show he’s attempted.

“I went back to the original fairytale and took elements that excited me and removed bits that didn’t.”

Set on a northern farm, the festive tale tells the story of gutsy teenager, Ella, whose family have hit hard times and whose sisters – recently relocated from Essex – are making her life a misery.

Cinderella runs until January 10.

Box office 01524-598500.