Pupils shine in fairytale

Aspiring young Durbanville actors will perform in Disneys Beauty and the Beast - A Broadway Musical this weekend. From left, are Luke Neetling (Beast), director Lesley Greenwood and Mia Fourie (Belle).

Young actors from several Durbanville high schools will have their moment to shine when they take to the stage in a timeless fairytale classic.

Pupils from Durbanville, Stellenberg, DF Malan and El Shaddai Christian high schools will star in Disney’s Beauty and the Beast – A Broadway Musical, which tells the story of Belle, a beautiful young woman whose father is imprisoned in a mysterious castle. Belle’s attempt to rescue him leads to her capture by the Beast, a prince trapped in monstrous form by an enchantment.

The only way for the Beast to become human once again is if he learns to love and be loved in return.

Director and Durbanville Preparatory School teacher Lesley Greenwood said the Oxford Theatre Club decided to stage the production to help young actors in the area show off their talent.

The club, which helps young performers aged 7 to 17, invited pupils from all the local high schools to audition, and every child who tried out for the production was given a role in the show.

The Beast will be played by Grade 8 Stellenberg High School pupil Luke Neethling who said his biggest challenge was the dancing.

Grade 10 Durbanville High School pupil Mia Fourie, who plays Belle, said the show was a “feel good” performance. She said most high school plays these days were “so dark”, and that it was nice to be doing something positive.

Mia has been a fan of Beauty and the Beast her whole life and knew all the words by heart.

Ms Greenwood said the show was not about making money but giving young actors a chance to shine.

She hopes to see Durbanville get its own theatre one day.

The production team is made up of Shan Cochrane and Jade Rothman (choreography), Sonja Els (stage and set design), Madeleine Fourie (costumes) and Corne Fourie (advertising and sponsorships). Professional singers Danielle Psomas and Karen de Goede gave the cast vocal training.

The 30-member cast has been rehearsing since January. The show will be staged in the Durbanville Preparatory School hall tomorrow, Friday April 28, at 7pm, with a matinee on Saturday April 29, at 2pm. Tickets cost R70. For more information or to book, contact Sonja at oxfordreservations@gmail.com or 082 772 4278.