A GROUP of 38 teenagers and adult leaders from Ilkley's Upstagers Theatre Group visited New York in the half term holiday.

Their trip was ostensibly to take in some of the new Broadway musicals and to take in the sights. They visited the Empire State Building and enjoyed ice skating in Central Park.

While they were in Time Square, where their hotel was situated, they were approached by a man from the CBS national television network and were asked to appear on the breakfast news show 'Early Today.'

They were filmed at 7am in 5th Avenue and the programme was broadcast to 280million viewers all over America.

Whilst in New York various groups of them took in the Broadway musicals 'Wicked', 'Hairspray', 'The Color Purple', 'The Pyjama Game', 'Avenue Q', 'The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee', 'Spamalot' and 'Jersey Boys'.

The group has now returned to commence rehearsals for their contributions to this year's Wharfedale Festival and weekly workshop classes.

Places are still available in some of these classes on Mondays from 5-6pm for 6-9 year-olds; from 6-7pm for 7-10 year-olds; and 7-8pm for 11-14 year-old. On Tuesdays from 6.30-7.30pm for 10-13 year-olds and Saturday mornings 9-10am for 6-9 year-olds and in the examination class from 11am-12.30pm for 11 plus years. For more information about these classes contact Denise on 01943 839262.

Upstagers have also commenced rehearsals for 'Witches of Eastwick' which they will perform at The Alhambra Theatre, Bradford, from May 31 to June 4. Upstagers leader Gill Jackson said: "This new musical comedy, set in the tiny community of Eastwick in New England, has never before been performed by amateur groups and Upstagers have gathered together the best local talent to present something very special.'

This is certainly a show not to be missed. Tickets are now available from the Alhambra Box Office on 01274 432000 or the Ilkley Tourist Information Centre on 01943 602319. Details for transport to the theatre will be announced shortly.