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News: Matthew Bourne’s Lord of the Flies at NewcastleTheatre Royal

16 Local Boys Chosen To Appear In New
Theatre Royal Production of
Lord Of The Flies

Following a lengthy selection process, 16 boys from the North East have been chosen from over 300 auditionees to perform in legendary choreographer Matthew Bourne’s thrilling new production of Lord of the Flies at Theatre Royal this winter from the 5th to the 8th November 2014.

Over the summer, boys and young men aged between 10 years and 25 years from across the region were invited to attend one of several free workshops. No previous dance experience was necessary, and over 300 took part. Around 120 boys and young men were selected from the workshops for the final audition, which took place in September.

The lucky 16 who have made the final selection and will perform in Lord of the Flies at the Theatre Royal this November are:

Ruben        Copley aged 11 from Northumberland, Joe Derbyshire aged 13, Finlay Murray aged 10 and Sam Carruthers aged 13 from Newcastle, Amonik Melaco aged 13 from Monkseaton, Louis Swanepoel aged 12 from Jesmond, Carl Hughes aged 15 from Northallerton, Jack Hindmarch aged 13 from Washington, Nathan Denton aged 13 from South Shields, Ciaran Oakleyaged 13 from Stockton on Tees, Marcel Li Ping aged 13 from Middlesbrough, Andrew Davison aged 17 from Seahouses, Andrew Ashton aged 17 from Cleveland, Robin Larkin aged 17 from Gateshead, John Hansford aged 19 from Peterlee, Joseph Wright aged 20 from Sunderland.

Photo: Helen Maybanks
The chosen group range in age from 10 to 21 years and come from all corners of the region from Stockton to Northumberland. The opportunity was brought to the region by Newcastle Theatre Royal and Dance City in a unique partnership with New Adventures and Re:Bourne. New Adventures has created some of the most successful shows of the last 25 years, including Swan Lake, Nutcracker! and Sleeping Beauty.

Lord of the Flies by Matthew Bourne’s New Adventures and Re:Bourne  (the company’s charitable arm) is a thrilling new large-scale dance spectacular choreographed by Olivier nominated Scott Ambler, adapted and directed by Matthew Bourne and Scott Ambler, and based on the classic novel by William Golding.

Lord of the Fliesis a rare and distinctive collaboration that brings together professional dancers with young people, many of whom who have never danced before. The success of the production is mutually reliant on a unique partnership between some of the UK’s most exceptional dance talent alongside local people chosen from each of the 13 cities the show visits.

Photo: Helen Maybanks
The non-professional performers join the cast of New Adventures dancers, including Sam Archer as ‘Ralph’, Ross Carpenter as 'Maurice', Luke Murphy as ‘Sam’, Sam Plant as ‘Piggy’, Philip King as ‘Eric’, Danny Reubens as ‘Jack’ and Dan Wright as ‘Roger’. Making their New Adventures debut’s in this production will be Layton Williams as ‘Simon’ and Jack Hazelton.

The action is transferred from deserted island to deserted theatre. A group of schoolboys find themselves abandoned. With no adults around they start to make their own rules and create their own civilisation, before order breaks down and the story builds to an electrifying climax. Golding’s legendary characters Ralph, Piggy, Jack and the boys will be brought to life with raw energy and emotional intensity.

Matthew Bourne said: “Lord of the Flies is a project never before mounted on the large-scale. This unique collaboration between my production company, New Adventures, and charity, Re:Bourne will enable young people and their families across the North East to experience dance at close hand, and for many, for the very first time. Our outstanding company of professional dancers will inspire and nurture the young cast which will not only be exciting, but for some, life-changing”.

Kate Pilbeam, one of two Lord of the Flies ambassadors who have led the workshops said: “We have met so many talented boys and young men over the last few weeks. It has been amazing watching them dance and we’ve been so impressed by the level of talent. This has made it very difficult to make a final decision, however we are confident that we have found 16 brilliant young dancers who will be excellent cast members.”

Philip Bernays Chief Executive of Newcastle Theatre Royal said: “This is a unique and very exciting opportunity to engage with and inspire young men in the region. I can’t wait to see the show when it opens here in November; I’m sure it will be an amazing and very special production.”

Dance City Artistic Director Anthony Baker said: “We couldn’t be more proud. We have found 16 talented dancers to be part of this prestigious production. We have also met so many other inspiring boys and young men along the way and we do hope that they will continue to enjoy dancing and seek out opportunities in the future.”

Set and costume design in Lord of the Fliesis by Olivier Award-winner Lez Brotherston, music is by Terry Davies, lighting design by Chris Davey and sound design by  Paul Groothuis. Touring Directors are New Adventures principal dancers Adam Galbraith and Alan Vincent.

The production is supported by Arts Council England, the Arts Council of Wales in addition to other major trusts and donors. Originally commissioned by Glasgow Theatres, part of Ambassador Theatre Group.

Re:Bourne is the charitable arm of Matthew Bourne’s New Adventures. Founded in 2008 the charity delivers projects, training, courses and productions to find, develop and inspire the next generation of dance-theatre professionals. Since its inception the charity has delivered over 800 workshops, 50 projects and worked with over 15,000 young people and emerging artists in the UK and overseas. The last two years have seen major growth for the charity, securing over £1,300,000 from funders, a rapid increase in turnover and launching more projects and strategic relationships in the UK and overseas.

New Adventuresis the UK’s most in-demand contemporary Dance/Theatre touring company. Under the inspired leadership of Artistic Director, Matthew Bourne, it has, over the last 25 years, changed the landscape of British dance with an award-winning repertory of works that have brought unprecedented new audiences to theatres throughout the UK and internationally.

Matthew Bourne and his team of world-class collaborators have consistently produced some of the most successful dance productions ever staged. Since its formation in 2002, New Adventures has created an enviable repertory of acclaimed new works (Play Without Words, Edward Scissorhands, Dorian Gray, Lord Of The Flies and Sleeping Beauty) as well as new productions of popular favourites from Matthew Bourne’s former company, Adventures In Motion Pictures (Nutcracker!, Swan Lake, Highland Fling, The Car Man and Cinderella).

Lord of the Flies appears at Newcastle Theatre Royal Wed 5 – Sat 8 November 2014
Evenings: 7.30pm, Matinees Thu 2pm & Sat 2.30pm
Tickets are from £11.50 (a booking fee of 95p - £1.95 will apply to most tickets) and can be purchased from the Theatre Royal Box Office on 08448 11 21 21 or select your own seat and book online at  

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