Schools tune up for Les Mis

The Napier Mail - - WHAT’S ON - ME­GAN HUNT

I Dreamed a Dream - one of the main songs from the mu­si­cal Les Mis­er­ables - was the tune Marla Beis­sel al­ways wanted to per­form on stage.

And in Au­gust the 16-yearold Iona Col­lege stu­dent will fi­nally have the chance when she takes to the stage as Fan­tine dur­ing the co-pro­duc­tion of the mu­si­cal be­tween her school and Lind­is­farne Col­lege.

The schools are stag­ing the iconic show at the Lind­is­farne Col­lege Au­di­to­rium from Au­gust 16 to 20.

Marla is one of four leads, with Oliver Howlett, 17 play­ing the role of Jean Val­jean, John Black, 17, as Javert and Cathy Pear­son, 16, as Cosette.

Oliver is in his fi­nal year of high school and af­ter the school’s stag­ing of The Lion King last year he be­gan cam­paign­ing for Les Mis­er­ables to be the 2017 pro­duc­tion.

Di­rec­tors Kathy Atkin from Lind­is­farne and Lisa-Jane Easter from Iona agreed and at the end of term one the cast be­gan re­hearsals which have now in­creased to three times a week.

For all of the young leads their jour­neys to the stage were dif­fer­ent. Oliver came from a fam­ily in­volved in the­atre, but was more in­ter­ested in what hap­pened back­stage un­til Year 11 when he was promised McDon­alds in ex­change for au­di­tion­ing for the school pro­duc­tion.

‘‘Now I love ev­ery as­pect of it, from act­ing to di­rect­ing and back­stage. I’m even happy paint­ing a set.’’

It was a dif­fi­cult show to do and he had found his role chal­leng­ing but for a high school pro­duc­tion there were some amaz­ing voices among the cast.

‘‘It’s not an easy show to do ... for me it’s re­ally hard to get into the mind­set of some­one three times my age and has been through so much I can’t even imag­ine.’’

For John it was the Lind­is­farne pro­duc­tion of Peter Pan in his Year 10 which drew him to the stage where he has re­mained ever since.

Cathy will be over­com­ing her nerves for her role as Cosette, as she usu­ally per­formed as part of a group. ‘‘I al­ways have in­cred­i­ble stage fright,’’ she said.

But the ex­pe­ri­ence of be­ing past of the cast was worth it. ‘‘Get­ting to know peo­ple - that’s the best part.’’

PHOTO: ME­GAN HUNT

Oliver

Howlett, 17, John Black, 17, Cathy

Pear­son, 16, and Marla Beis­sel, 16, are the leads in the pro­duc­tion of Les Mis­er­ables.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from New Zealand

© PressReader. All rights reserved.