Howard Goodall’s second musical, Girlfriends, was first performed at the Oldham Coliseum Theatre, in May 1986. Howard wrote the music and lyrics, based on the book he had written in collaboration with Richard Curtis and John Retallack. Girlfriends is cast for twelve women and two men, with a band of six, and is set on an RAF Bomber Command base during World War 2. Its first cast included Maria Friedman, Andrew C Wadsworth, Jenna Russell and Carla Mendonca. Its season in Oldham was a sell-out, with enthusiastic reviews and audiences.

Girlfriends was substantially revised and produced in October 1987 at the re-opened Playhouse Theatre in London, starring Hazel O’Connor and David Easter, but the show was later reworked along the lines of its Oldham version in 1992 and performed at the Arts Theatre.

Girlfriends was part of a triple billed season of the work of Howard Goodall which was produced by The Union Theatre in October 2014.



“Bronagh Lagan directs the cast of 12 with her usual polish.” – MUSICAL THEATRE REVIEW


“Bronagh Lagan’s production is an atmospheric triumph..”

“intimate, intricate and heartfelt..”

“score of surging choral anthems..”

“tapestry of emotion in music..” – THE STAGE 4* Mark Shenton


‘A real theatrical treat. This is one of the best musical productions at the Union Theatre in the last five years’ – BRITISH THEATRE 4*


‘In Girlfriends Goodall has dissipated the chill of wartime with one of his richest, warmest scores. If you love his work, beautifully staged, then go see this show.’ – JONATHAN BAZ


“..rousing finales to both acts.”

“It is worth the price of a ticket just to hear the harmonies created by the ten ladies in this company..” – THE PUBLIC REVIEWS


“beautifully sung with intensity, drive and passion…”

“haunting and captivating..” – A YOUNGER THEATRE