THERE will be a different slant on the changing face of England during the First World War, when touring theatre company Mikron stages a performance in Bishampton Village Hall, near Pershore for one night only on Saturday, August 30.

Called Troupers, play is set against the backdrop of the start of the war - it’s 1914 and British entertainment is down on its uppers. A loss of appetite for frivolous pleasures and a dearth of young men finds actor-manager Lena Ashwell with a theatre, but no audience. A passionate advocate of 'art for all' and determined to do her bit, she assembles a motley bunch of ‘turns’ and books a tour with a difference. Her Troupers won’t tread the boards of Old Blighty, but the muddy, bloody fields of France.

In a little-told story of the conflict, Troupers brings to life the amazingly audacious "Concerts At The Front", a hitherto unsung war effort that’s full of guts, gusto and greasepaint.

Troupers is a new project for Mikron and marks the centenary of the war by telling the little-known story of female impresario Lena Ashwell, a woman who fought for the Arts at a time of economic uncertainty, when theatre was seen as a frivolous luxury.

"The telling of her story is, sadly, relevant in 2014," said Marianne McNamara, Mikron’s artistic director, who directs the show. "By presenting Lena Ashwell’s story we are telling the story of the place the Arts had, and still have, in a struggling society. I’m also aware that there will be a lot of companies marking this important centenary, we are really interested in having a central character who is female, at a point in history which is often told from a male perspective, and a story about those who entertain and enrich the lives of our service men and women and how that started out.”

Mikron has been been producing its unique brand of theatre for 43 years and is the only company touring throughout England by narrowboat. In the summer months it travels along canals and rivers, and moors up at canal-side venues; pubs, village halls, marinas and dry docks. The cast of four unpack set, props, costumes, musical instruments and lights and as the audience gather, conjure up a variety of characters, stories and songs, transporting the audience back to 1914.

Troupers can be seen at Bishampton Village Hall at 7pm on Saturday, August 30. Tickets are £9 in advance, £11 on the door with family admission available.