A PERFORMING arts group has scooped a national award for it's latest 'outstanding' production.

Abigail's Performing Arts took home the National Operatic and Dramatic Association award for 'Best Musical in the Region' for it's performance of 9 to 5 The Musical on Sunday May 12.

The group is celebrating it's fifth anniversary this year, and director Abigail Overall says this is the perfect time to receive the group's first award.

She said: "When they called out our name at the awards, we totally erupted.

"The passion from our cast and crew was phenomenal.

"All of the stress, hard work and hours of rehearsals was worth it in the end. Success is not easy."

The production of 9 to 5 raised £742.62 for the Little Havens Hospice.

"I just want to thank the huge cast, crew and talented band for their hard work and dedication.

"I'd also like to thank everyone who supported us by watching the show and donated to Little Havens Hospice, you've changed lives."

The Halstead based performing arts group were up against other local groups including: Colchester Operatic Society, Witham Amateur Operatic Society and Brightlingsea Musical Theatre Group.

The group's next production, Annie Jr, will be at Braintree Arts Theatre on July 6 and 7.

The final remaining tickets are on sale at: www.braintreeartstheatre.com.