A year after our hit musical The Boy in the Dress began its run in Stratford-upon-Avon we share the story of young audience member, Elijah.

Elijah’s family arranged to come and see The Boy in the Dress at the last minute. He was on the organ transplant list, waiting for a liver and his mum, Lisa, was scheduled to go in for surgery to have a third of her own liver removed and donated to him.

We gave the family tickets and a goodie bag so they could have a special evening at a difficult time.

Lisa said: "It was a last minute, carefree adventure which we enjoyed - it gave us a few hours of normality."

2 young children standing in front of a The Boy in the Dress board in the theatre foyer
Elijah and his sister, Matilda, at The Boy in the Dress in February 2020, shortly before his liver transplant.

Three weeks later the hospital cancelled Lisa and Elijah’s surgery as they said it was too much of a risk for both of them. But at 9.30am the following day they received a call that a liver was available.

Nine months after his transplant, Lisa said: “Elijah is thriving, has turned ten and generally loving life.”

With theatres closed, the family are missing theatre trips and got in touch to update us on Elijah’s progress.

Lisa added: “The theatre is something we particularly miss this Christmas. I just wanted you to know that your kindness and that last blast visit to the theatre gave us such a boost in our darkest of times. 

“I understand that your industry is going through dark times now - I have learnt a lot in the last year - please don't lose hope. Thank you for all that you do and for all that you give.”

a boy and 2 girls and a dog sitting on a tree stump in a field with pumpkins
Elijah and his two sisters, Matilda and Beatrice, in October this year