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Barking Abbey students perform in Royal Shakespeare Company's Romeo and Juliet at the Barbican

PUBLISHED: 07:00 08 January 2019

Alfred Boakye-Amponsah, Lauren Hugget, Andreea Sisetean and Fuad Salum from Barking Abbey School. Picture: Tania Ahmad

Alfred Boakye-Amponsah, Lauren Hugget, Andreea Sisetean and Fuad Salum from Barking Abbey School. Picture: Tania Ahmad

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Students from a school in Barking will make their acting debut in the Royal Shakespeare Company's Romeo and Juliet.

Pupils from Barking Abbey rehearsing for Romeo and Juliet. Picture: Tania AhmadPupils from Barking Abbey rehearsing for Romeo and Juliet. Picture: Tania Ahmad

A group of four Year 10 students from Barking Abbey School will star in the play at the Barbican, alongside credited actors, directors and production staff.

The opportunity comes as part of the RSC Associate Schools programme, in which teachers receive training on how to make Shakespeare more active in the classroom.

The pupils will be performing in four shows from January 14 to 19, while attending a full school timetable and technical rehearsals. The programme on the night will also feature a piece written by the students about their parts in the play.

In casting the production, the RSC sought out students from inner London schools, in a bid to encourage social mobility and reflect diversity, and director Erica Whyman felt Romeo and Juliet’s focus on gang violence and social division might resonate with young people in today’s climate. The performance is also hoped to break the class barrier of theatre and promote it as something for all backgrounds.

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