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'You're not in Guatemala now, Doctor Ropata' - Shortland Street the musical taking to the stage in November

It's graced our television screens five nights a week for 26 years, and now, Shortland Street is taking to the stage.

It's hoped fans of the beloved Kiwi hospital drama and its classic opening theme will be humming some new tunes when Shortland Street the musical opens in November.

The musical’s songwriter, Guy Langford, says the show is "a celebration of who we are and how we've grown in the last 25 years".

"I think it's a great way to celebrate with song and dance - and there's characters that we love."

Actress Lisa Chappell will be playing Carrie Burton, the nurse with perhaps the most famous line in New Zealand television – You're not in Guatamala now, Doctor Ropata".

"I get to say the best line in New Zealand history! I get to sing it!" Ms Chappell said.

The musical is an affectionate parody of the show's early years, featuring Kiwi stars such as Mark Hadlow and Chris Parker.

"We're using all those classic early stories and characters but we've taken liberties a little bit," director Simon Bennett, who has worked on the show for two decades, said.

"It plays around the cliffhangers and commercial breaks and heroes and villains and love triangles."

The stage adaptation also has the approval of one of Ferndale's most beloved residents.

Elizabeth McRae, who played Shortland Street Hospital receptionist Marg Neilson, thinks the musical is "a great idea".

"I think it'll work very well indeed - very clever, very funny and the music was good," she said.

McRae's daughter Katherine will star in her iconic role.

"When Shortland Street started, I watched it a lot. I've almost internalised Marj," Katherine McRae said.

"I don't think she needs to tell me a lot."

The beloved New Zealand drama is being made into a musical. Source: 1 NEWS