Dickens classic Nicholas Nickleby on Masque stage

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This year has been special for Northampton’s Masque Theatre as the group has celebrated its 80th anniversary.

And from this week, the theatre company will also be marking Charles Dickens’ 200th anniversary with an adaptation of one of the author’s famous works.

Rob Kendall has adapted Nicholas Nickleby for the stage in these forthcoming performances.

The hero of Dickens’ novel, Nicholas Nickleby (played by Ste Applegate), overcomes adversity at Dotheboys Hall where Waskford Squeers (Owen Warr) manages to brutalise most of the boys with the cane. That is until Smike (Lewis Marks) escapes with Nicholas for a better life.

The tale involves plenty of theatrical action with the Infant Phenomena, and conflict with the wicked Uncle Ralph, until eventually fame, fortune and love come to Nicholas.

As Rob Kendall explains: “Like most Charles Dickens stories, the bad end unhappily and the good happily and this truly moral tale, played out by a Masque Theatre cast of 25 in full Victorian costume, will bring both a tear and laughter to all the family.”

Nicholas Nickleby will be performed at The Church of the Holy Sepulchre, in Sheep Street, Northampton, from Tuesday, December 4 until Saturday, December 8. Performances start at 7.30pm.

Tickets cost £8 or £7 for concessions. Children’s tickets cost £5 each.

Bookings can be made by calling 07586 288793 or by emailing tickets@

They can also be purchased in person at The Most Marvellous Place to Shop in Abington Square.