Rocking show sets theatre record

RECORD numbers of people turned out in Ipswich to see the latest production by the Co-op Juniors, it was announced today.

RECORD numbers of people turned out in Ipswich to see the latest production by the Co-op Juniors, it was announced today.

Last week saw the group performing rock musical We Will Rock You at the Corn Exchange and the show set a new record for the venue.

More than 4,500 turned out to see the seven performances of the show, which was written by comedian Ben Elton and features the music of Queen.

Pauline Walker, co-director of the Co-op Juniors, said: “We sold almost 1,000 more tickets for We Will Rock You than for last year's production of Fame at the Regent.

“It was an ambitious, large-scale show which was a challenge to stage, but by clever use of the stage, some fantastic video projection, and cast members appearing through the floor on lifts, we pulled it off.

“We even managed to get a real Harley Davidson and a car sliced in half onto the stage.”

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A cast of more than 40 members of the Co-op Juniors took part in the show and musical director Nigel Virley said the youngsters had coped well with the demands of staging a show written for professional performers.

He said: “It's a demanding vocal score.

“Many people think rock and roll is pretty easy, but it's as difficult as opera in some ways, and the young cast rose to the challenge. We used backing vocalists offstage to enhance the sound, so members of the cast were kept busy even when they weren't on stage.”

The next project for the Ipswich Co-op Juniors will be the Christmas Spectacular at Snape Maltings, which will have a cast of 100 and a live orchestra.

This year marks the third time the Juniors have performed at Snape, with the previous two Christmas Spectaculars being sell-outs.

N Did you see the show? What did you think? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN, or e-mail eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk

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