Celebrating six decades in 
the spotlight

Nan McDonald, the founder of Children's Theatre Bo'ness. Nan has just celebrated 60 years in amateur dramatics. 3/2/16

Nan McDonald, the founder of Children's Theatre Bo'ness. Nan has just celebrated 60 years in amateur dramatics. 3/2/16

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Nan McDonald was just 16 when she was bitten by the bug for performing.

As a teenager, she fell in love with singing, acting and dancing, and spent the next 30 years treading the boards, performing leading lady roles.

After retiring from the stage, she nurtured the talents of thousands of children running Linlithgow Amateur Musical Productions (LAMP) and Children’s Theatre Bo’ness, alongside husband Bill.

And last week, her 60-year commitment to amateur dramatics both on and off the stage was recognised with a presentation at Bo’ness Town Hall.

She said: “I think I’m like Frank Sinatra; I’ve had too many comebacks.

“Just when I think it’s time to stop, I get going again.

“It’s a bug; you can’t help it.”

As a teenager, Nan joined Falkirk Bohemians, performing her first leading role in her early 20s, but later became a member of Bathgate Operatic Society.

By that time, she had performed countless roles, with her favourites including Dolly in Hello Dolly.

She said: “When I turned 50, I decided to retire from the stage which was the thing I loved the most, but the bug never leaves you.”

In 1985, the McDonalds became involved with LAMP before leaving to start Children’s Theatre Bo’ness in 2000.

The theatre has produced a yearly show ever since, with director Nan being recognised after last week’s Rapunzel run.

Nan (76), who lives in Brightons said: “As long as the children are enjoying it, I’ll just keep going.”