It's a dogs life for new cast member

BE confident, remember to make eye contact and, whatever you do, don't bark until you are told to!Those were the audition tips handed out at Ipswich's Regent Theatre to the latest line-up of stage hopefuls – a selection of talented dogs.

BE confident, remember to make eye contact and, whatever you do, don't bark until you are told to!

Those were the audition tips handed out at Ipswich's Regent Theatre to the latest line-up of stage hopefuls - a selection of talented dogs.

The unusual try-outs were the Ipswich Operatic and Dramatic Society's search for a canine showstopper to star in its new production of Anything Goes.

Actress Angela Rankin was looking for a pet to play her companion Cheeky.

The chosen pooch in the dog-idol style contest was Jasper - an eight-year-old long-haired Chihuahua belonging to Karen Fox, from Kesgrave.

Mrs Fox, of Penryn Road, said: "This is his acting debut but he's very well behaved and I know he's got the right character for this. I can't wait to see him on stage.

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"I've had him three-and-a-half years. He was a rescue dog found walking the streets."

The only criteria for the open auditions were that the dogs were small and well behaved.

Mrs Rankin, who plays Evangeline Harcourt, said: "The dog will be on stage quite a lot so it's important we found one who feels comfortable with being on stage, and the lights and sounds.

"This is the first time I've had to act with an animal and I'm looking forward to practising with him.

"It will be different having the responsibility of looking after him but he seems very well behaved so it shouldn't be a problem.

"Size was a issue and I needed a dog who seemed comfortable with me, even when I can't give it all my attention. I promise to take very good care of him though.

"The commitment of the owner is important as well as they will have to be backstage every night."

Martha, a nine-year-old Yorkshire Terrier belonging to Rachel Lucock, of Elmhurst Drive, Ipswich, was selected to be Jasper's understudy.

WEBLINK:

www.ipswichregent.com

www.iods.co.uk

Anything Goes is showing at the Ipswich Regent from April 6 to 9 at 7.30pm. There is a matinee on Saturday, April 9, at 2.30pm.

Does your pet have a special talent? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or send us an e-mail to eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk

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