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Alnwick Stage Musical Society is starting rehearsals for its next show, The Mystery of Edwin Drood – and new members are welcome to try out for the production.

Loosely based on an unfinished novel by Charles Dickens, the show is set in a London music hall, so there will be plenty of audience participation.

The story centres around the character of the young, arrogant Edwin Drood, who disappears one stormy night.

Sally Pumford, who will be directing for the Society this year, said: “Drood is such an exciting show that I’m surprised it’s not more well known.

“The audience even gets to vote on how the show ends, so in theory there could be a different ending each night.

“It is essentially a ‘whodunnit’. The role of the audience being to solve the mystery of his disappearance.”

In the Victorian music hall tradition of male impersonators, the character of Drood is played by a woman.

Sally added: “It’s a lovely part for a versatile actress.

“The music is catchy and tuneful and there are plenty of brilliant character parts for men and women of all ages.

“There’s a lot for the chorus to do too and we’ll also need some talented dancers.”

The show will be performed at Alnwick Playhouse in March 2013.

Anyone interested in finding out more should attend the Society’s meeting on Tuesday at Alnwick South School at 7.30pm, where the show will be introduced, the music will be played and the characters will be discussed.

There will be a chance to learn audition pieces the following week before the auditions will be held for women on Thursday, September 20, and men on Tuesday, September 25.