THE Queens Christmas Day message had special resonance for a Chester theatre company.
Her Majestys address to the nation was filmed at Hampton Court Palace this year, rather than at the traditional Buckingham Palace, and she talked about the 400th anniversary of the publication of the King James Bible which will be celebrated in 2011.
Cast and choir members of Theatre in the Quarter were at Hampton Court Palace in the three days leading up to Christmas performing excerpts from their original play James to launch the James I Bible Trust celebrations next year.
King James I of England (James VI of Scotland) agreed to commission a new translation of the scriptures at a conference held at Hampton Court Palace in 1604 and it was completed seven years later. The play was performed in the palaces Great Hall.
Writer Helen Newall said: It is one thing to present a historical play; quite another to present that play in the setting in which the original events occurred.
Choir member Anna Prochazka, of Queens Park, added: To sing in that stupendous hall with its high vaulted ceilings and gargoyles staring down at you was amazing.
Tickets for all three nights of the performance were sold out and the chief executive of historic royal palaces Michael Day told artistic director Matt Baker that the production was the best thing he had seen in the Great Hall at Hampton Court for a long time.