Bristol Old Vic has been raising funds for local homeless charity, St Mungo’s, with collection buckets overflowing with public generosity. Audiences have astounded the charity and theatre teams as people responded overwhelmingly giving more than £2,400 in the first week of the show’s performances.  

The Bristol Old Vic team has introduced collection buckets at the end of each show of The Little Matchgirl and Other Happier Tales to raise funds for St Mungo’s as it seemed most fitting to the story line of the play.

The Little Matchgirl and Other Happier Tales follows the tale of an impoverished heroine, who struggles to keep warm on the freezing winter streets and strikes her dwindling stock of matches to keep warm. Each match she strikes conjures a new story, and while it burns she escapes into an enchanting world of magic and mystery. Inspired by the beautiful Hans Christian Andersen tales, audiences follow her through the spellbinding stories of The Princess and the Pea, The Emperor’s New Clothes and Thumbelina.

Producer Catherine Morgenstern said: “The show contains themes of homelessness so it felt fitting to support St Mungo’s and the vital work that the charity does in Bristol. We are really pleased that audiences have felt moved to give so generously.”

Emma Rice’s production has come to Bristol for the Christmas period following its critically acclaimed premiere at Shakespeare’s Globe last year. Collections will take place for the charity until 8 January.

Kat Lacy, St Mungo’s fundraising regional manager, said: “We are delighted that Bristol Old Vic and the producers of The Little Matchgirl and Other Happier Tales have decided to support us. The show has been a huge hit full of music, laughter, puppetry and magic which asks us to consider the true meaning of Christmas spirit. The public response has been overwhelming and the money raised will remain in the region to assist projects on-going throughout Bristol and Bath, as well as supporting the Night Shelter which offers a safe bed for the night while we assess individual needs and offer long-term support.”

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