Adapted by Firth from his own screenplay to the 2003 film, the original stage play premiered at the Chichester Festival Theatre in 2008 prior to a 2009 West End transfer. Firth collaborated with "Take That" pop songwriter Barlow on the new musical that has its world premiere Nov. 14-Dec. 12 at Grand Theatre Leeds, followed by a run at the Lowry Salford (Jan. 13-30, 2016).
A West End run has not been announced; however, the initial stage production also toured the U.K. before arriving in London. David Pugh and Dafydd Rogers produce.
Firth directs the musical along with Roger Haines. The Girls has production design by Rob Jones, comedy staging by Jos Houben, lighting design by Tim Lutkin and sound design by Terry Jardine and Nick Lidster.
The cast features Debbie Chazen, Sara Kestelman, Claire Machin, Claire Moore, Vivien Parry, Joanna Riding, Harriet Thorpe, Stephen Boswell, Joey Caffrey, Jeremy Clyde, John Davitt, Susan Fay, James Gaddas, Steve Giles, Shirley Jameson, Judith Street, Karen West, Allison Harding, David Breeds, Sarah Day, Josh Benson, Ben Hunter and Chloe Jackson. According to the creators, "The Girls is inspired by the true story of a group of ladies, who decide to appear nude for a Women’s Institute calendar in order to raise funds to buy a settee for their local hospital, in memory of one of their husbands. This musical comedy shows life in their Yorkshire village, how it happened, the effect on husbands, sons and daughters, and how a group of ordinary ladies achieved something extraordinary."