Pupils at Samuel Lister Academy take on Shakespeare
400 years after playwright William Shakespeare’s death, local school children from Samuel Lister Academy, in Cottingley, Bradford, have been keeping his memory very much alive.
The students have been performing his play ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’ – with the original dialogue – at the Alhambra Theatre, and will continue to do so until Saturday.
They have been joined by members of the Royal Shakespeare Company on stage to form part of Titania’s fairy train.
On their first performance they were joined by a very special guest, Blue Peter presenter Radzi Chinyanganya.
Radzi has been a Blue Peter presenter since October 2013. So far he has completed many challenges on the programme but he’s never had to perform live on a theatre stage before and the Blue Peter cameras were there to capture it all.
Carol Vaughan, PA to the Principal at Samuel Lister Academy said: “I went to see the play and the children were exceptional; you would have thought they were from a professional theatre group.”
Prior to the performances, members of the RSC Education and creative teams visited Samuel Lister Academy to rehearse with the children.
During the rehearsals the children created their own very special fairy worlds, learnt a fairy song and a specially devised dance routine, and explored the lines of text that they performed in the show.
Jacqui O’Hanlon, RSC Director of Education, said: “We were thrilled that for the first time schoolchildren from all over the UK got the chance to appear alongside RSC actors as part of our 2016 touring production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream.
“This anniversary year is about celebrating the legacy of our national poet, and the best way to do that is by opening Shakespeare up to everyone.”
The children that took part from Samuel Lister Academy were: Bradley, Shuaib, Hassan, Sean, Rashda, Freda, Zain, Fizzah, Nida, Louis, Dehleez, Alhayna, Mohammed, Aamina, Ali, Hamza, Zain, Fatima, Sumiyyah, Rahees, Saima, Adam, Mehroz, Fatima, Sana, Adam, Paige, Fiza, Abdul and Ajay.
‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream: A Play for the Nation’ is a co-production between the Royal Shakespeare Company and amateur theatre companies across the UK.