With just five weeks until opening night the Dannevirke Theatre Company's production of Chess is coming together well, director Melissa Martin says.

"The whole show is music, with very minimal dialogue, so with two-and-a-half hours of music, trying to pull this together from a musical perspective has been challenging," Miss Martin said.

At Sunday's rehearsal it was the first time the orchestra and cast had come together and for Miss Martin and Gary Michelmore, the musical director, it couldn't have gone better. "It went fantastically well and the live music adds that extra piece of magic to the show," Miss Martin said. Not since Annie, 12 years ago, has the Dannevirke Theatre Company had a live orchestra for a major production. "It's added another element to the show and on Sunday, the coming together of performers, dancers and the musicians lifted everyone," Miss Martin said.

Miss Martin is determined to make each performance an experience not to be forgotten. "Downstairs we're selling tables and when you purchase a table ticket you receive a complimentary drink, it all adds to the atmosphere. This production isn't just about coming to see a show, it's the whole theatrical experience," she said.

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- Tickets for Chess are on sale at the Dannevirke Information Centre and through TicketDirect. The show opens on April 15 in the Dannevirke Town Hall.