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Lord Wandsworth Students Take On Challenge of 'Columbinus'

Published Monday 25th of February 2013 03:53:33 PM

Students at Lord Wandsworth College took their revived production of 'Columbinus' to the Central Studio Theatre in Basingstoke for two consecutive nights (6th and 7th February). The same cast who worked so effectively together for the first time in Spring 2012 to produce an in house version of the play, came together again to take on the duel challenge of revisiting a challenging text and taking it to a theatre space outside of LWC. With one new face, Dan Shepherd, who bravely took on the daunting task of working with an already formed close-knit ensemble, readily approached the task and seemed to slot into the piece as if he'd always been part of the cast. With the support of Jeremy Bizot-Smerdon's skills with a video camera, some of the rehearsal process and the production itself was captured on film. The technical crew also committed fully to the project. Without their commitment the piece would not have been the success that it was.

'Columbinus' is a theatrical discussion and for the creative team it was at times a testing and emotionally exhausting experience due to the personal investment required. For the audience it opened their minds to the issues surrounding such an horrific event. It also gave an insight into how far you can stretch young actors; they always rise to the task with energy, skill and enthusiasm.

Unbeknown to the cast and crew of 'Columbinus' the original cast had decided to revive the production in Chicago with new additions based on further research with the residence of Littleton where the Columbine massacre took place. The opening night was the 6th February, the same date as the Lord Wandsworth opening night. A coincidence? Probably, but also, does it not suggest that this is a play that has to be seen? It is current, thought provoking, relevant and necessary. Vic Allan, Head of Performing Arts at the College said; 'I'm so glad that some of the pupils at LWC could be part of such a cutting edge event.'
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