Ireland’s largest theatre school, which trains almost 400 young people from across Northern Ireland in the magical art of theatre, are creating another spectacular Summer Youth Project which promises to capture and enthral audiences lucky enough to get a ticket!
Belfast School of Performing Arts returns to the MAC with its Summer Youth Project this August, the talented team are hosting a three week intensive course culminating in 5 showings of the world’s greatest love story of all time – West Side Story.
With warring gangs, struggling to survive in a world of hate, violence and prejudice, West Side Story is arguably one of the most relevant musicals of our time. Director James Huish has a few tricks up his sleeve to bring to life the intense reality and heartache of the story;
“I will be creating a divide between the Sharks and the Jets in rehearsals, even during break times, I truly believe that as each actor totally immerses themselves in becoming their character that a greater standard of acting will be achieved and therefore a more spectacular show will be produced. These young people are incredibly talented and this is a form of acting that is used regularly in both the West End and on Broadway.”
At BSPA each production strives to bring those taking part the experience of being involved in a truly professional show. Many young people taking part will go on to a life on the stage and the professional team behind BSPA encourages them to be prepared for what lies ahead, those who don’t want a career in acting get just as much out of taking part and enjoying the experience of a lifetime!
This production of West Side Story is made possible with a cast of 60 young people, aged from just 14 years old and a back stage production team of 15. James goes on to say that the talent coming through the audition process has been exceptional;
“One of the reasons I founded BSPA was because of the huge number of talented young people in Northern Ireland who really didn’t have an outlet for their talent, each audition we do confirms my original belief – NI is full of talent! BSPA is constantly expanding into new areas and we now have classes running in Belfast, Ballymena and Lisburn –each school is growing rapidly and we are looking forward to taking BSPA to even more locations across NI and beyond. Our Summer Youth Project is always an opportunity for those not involved to try it out and to spend their summer holidays doing something incredibly rewarding! I’m proud of every one of them and can’t wait to see the finished show!”