Drama students honoured with big stage invite
THE limelight will be beckoning for ten talented Peterborough students when they take to the stage for a “once in a lifetime” performance.
The youngsters, from St John Fisher Catholic High School in Park Road, Peterborough, are headlining a star-studded charity gala in London next weekend.
They are set to perform Twelfth Night at the prestigious Royal Court Theatre as part of Shakespeare Schools Festival’s one-off event on Sunday, May 13.
Hosted by TV presenter Sue Perkins, there will also be an appearance from charity patron and film and TV actress Jenny Agutter as Twelfth Night’s Prospero.
The Year 12 students, who are all studying A-level drama and theatre studies, were selected for the privilege after being invited to take part in the Shakespeare Schools Festival, the UK’S largest youth drama festival, last summer.
They performed Twelfth Night at Peterborough’s Key Theatre to great acclaim, and across the country more than 600 schools were involved.
Following the festival, St John Fisher was the only secondary school chosen to take part in the gala, and one of only three schools in total.
The students will be the only ones doing a full version of the play and will be opening the gala with its 30- minute interpretation.
The gala is a snapshot of the work the charity does with young people across the country – with the aim of raising funds to pay to allow more students to take part.
Sean Hayes, headteacher of St John Fisher School, said students, staff and parents are equally thrilled at the opportunity for some of its students to experience performing at a professional London theatre.
He said: “This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for our students and a real acknowledgement of their talent and professionalism.
“I know that they will give an outstanding performance, as they always do, and I will be so proud to watch them perform in a professional theatre.”
Clare Gwenin, the school’s head of expressive arts and director of Twelfth Night, said: “Directing Twelfth Night initially was great fun and extremely enjoyable and we were overwhelmed with the positive response from the audience. However, to be then chosen out of 600 schools to represent the Shakespeare for Schools Festival at The Royal Court was a huge compliment.
“I am delighted my students have the opportunity to showcase their talents by performing in such a well known theatre, and despite their nerves, know that they will produce a first class performance making me immensely proud.”
STARS: Siobhan Kelly and Jordan Macintosh will perform Twelfth Night at the Royal Court Theatre along with Kirsty Macintosh, Liam Kehoe, Patryk Zakrocki, Riah-mae Davis, Stephanie Beara, Zainia James, Charlotte Aitken and Iziah Robinson.