Young actors who turned their hand to writing to see their first play on stage

The cast of Zip, Zap, Boing with Fiona Martin, left.
The cast of Zip, Zap, Boing with Fiona Martin, left.
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A pair of young acting hopefuls are due to see their first piece of work performed on stage in their hometown.

The Customs House Youth Theatre members Jonathon Graham and Andrew Walker came up with the idea of creating a new piece of writing last year.

Their story of a fictitious youth theatre group is now set to be staged at the Customs House in Mill Dam, South Shields.

Jonathon, 18, and Andrew, 19, who hail from the town, are members of the club’s senior group.

They spent a week working together at the Customs House over the summer holidays to start the creative process, devising material and developing characters before Jonathon started writing the script last September.

Daniel Clifford, cultural development officer, was so impressed with their early efforts that he asked them to have the script ready to be performed as part of The Takeover, next week.

They performed two minutes of it at the Customs House Scratch Night in October, and got some great feedback, particularly about their authentic dialogue.

Andrew, Jonathon, and some of the Cultural Development Team were then part of an audition panel that saw more than 40 young actors, and helped assemble their cast of eight.

Rehearsals don’t start until Monday, so the team will only have five days before the play, Zip, Zap, Boing, is performed on Friday, June 3, at 7pm.

Jonathon is studying for his A-Levels at Harton Technology College, and Andrew is an actor training with the Theatre Royal’s Project A.

The play will form part of next week’s Takeover Festival, when young people aged between 15 and 25 organise a wide range of events and workshops.

Fiona Martin, cultural development manager who leads the Youth Theatre, said: “It’s been a pleasure to be able to support Andrew and Jonathon in their creative journey, and I hope to do the work justice when I’m directing the play.”

Tickets for Zip, Zap, Boing are on sale now. with people are asked to pay what they think the show is worth.

To reserve seats, go to www.customshouse.co.uk or call the box office on 0191 454 1234.