“Magical, Enchanting” Classic Musical with Talented Teen Cast
Lane Cove Theatre Company presents BEAUTY AND THE BEAST
Adapted and Directed by Sarah Edwards
This article was written by Geoff Sirmai from Sirmai Arts Marketing
Hot on the heels of its hugely successful production of Holding the Man, Lane Cove Theatre Company now turns to its annual musical treat – this time featuring a slew of talented young performers.
Beauty and the Beast – much loved in versions from Victor Hugo’s original, epic novel to the classic and recent Disney movies – is one of the world’s great love stories. And this family-friendly re-imagining boasts a cast brimming with energy and musical talent!
The “tale as old as time” follows the adventures of Belle, a bright young woman with no shortage of attitude when challenged by the small-minded! She finds herself imprisoned in a castle with the mysterious Beast, who is really a prince trapped in a spell. With the assistance of the castle’s enchanted staff, a delightful and tender romance develops between these two unlikely friends and Belle soon learns the most important lesson of all; that true beauty comes from within.
Adapted and directed by Sarah Edwards, the production stars Josie Segal as Belle, Alexei Belchenko as the Beast, Cassie Mildwater as Gaston, Jeremy Segal as Lumiere, Haydon Ashley as Cogsworth, Madeleine Biddle as Mrs Potts and Lefou, Aidan Emeleus as Maurice, Emma Ashley as Plumette, Katie McPherson as Philippe the Horse and Eve Emeleus as Chip, along with Charlotte Pugh, Amelie Balestriere, Holly Barling, Alice Austin, Valeria Gonzalez Lopez and Piper Kup-Ferroth in the ensemble.
Director Edwards says the messages of Beauty and the Beast remain as timeless and relevant as ever:
“In a world where world leaders, corporations and people of influence would have us instantly judge others based on appearances, it is more important than ever that, like Belle, that we learn to look past what we see on the outside and instead judge people on their convictions and the quality of their character. A family musical isn’t going to change the world but, in these divisive times, we hope our talented young cast bringing a little magic to the stage will help remind audiences that true beauty is always found within.”
Experience the magic and enchantment as Lane Cove Theatre Company brings one of the most beautiful love stories ever told to life in a dazzling new production that will delight the whole family!
BEAUTY AND THE BEAST
Adapted and directed by Sarah Edwards
10-25 November at The Performance Space @ St Aidan’s 1 Christina Street, Longueville NSW 2066
Friday 10th Nov 7.30pm | Saturday 11th Nov 5pm | Sunday 12th Nov 2pm | Friday 17th Nov 7.30pm
Saturday 18th Nov 5pm | Sunday 19th Nov 2pm | Friday 24th Nov 7.30pm | Saturday 25th Nov 2pm
Local Cast Members
Josie Segal as Belle (Riverview)
Josie is in Year Ten at Killara High School where she is a drama student, as well as having vocal coaching.
This is her third year with Lane Cove Theatre Company, after The Snow Queen in 2015 in which she had the role as The Robber Princess, and The Jungle Book last year in which she had the role of Mowgli’s mother, Messua.
This year, she is thrilled to have been given the role of Belle, as she relates much to the character with her shared love of reading and adventure.
Alexei Belchenko as The Beast/The Prince (Lane Cove)
Alexei is a 15 year old boy studying in Year 9 at Cammeraygal High School, Crows Next. This is his fifth performance with Lane Cove Theatre Company and his first playing a major role. Alexei participates in drama at school as an elective and is enjoying his fourth term of it. Alexei has always been attracted to creative arts whether it be music, art or drama, playing three instruments and creating numerous artworks. He now produces music in his free time and hopes to make a future out of it. Alexei is super stoked to be playing the roles of The Beast and The Prince and hopes you enjoy the show!
Cassie Mildwater as Gaston (Longueville)
Cassie has been involved with Lane Cove Theatre Company since their production of King Arthur in 2009, acting in many children’s shows and doing sound for other shows. She has since fallen in love with both the technical and acting side of theatre, this being highlighted in the “entertainment studies” TAFE course she is taking in Years 11 and 12. Being incredibly loud and having a larger than life personality helped her settle into the role of Gaston well. She is currently in Year 10 at Sydney Secondary College’s Balmain campus.
Jeremy Segal as Lumière (Riverview)
Jeremy Segal goes to Killara High School in Year 10 and has been performing with Lane Cove Theatre Company for three years, featuring in The Jungle Book and The Snow Queen. Jeremy has also been involved in other musical and theatrical performances such as The Addams Family, Honk Jr and The Tale of the Moon Cake. Jeremy studied drama in both Year 9 and 10 and wishes to take drama as an elective for the HSC. He is currently directing Year 7 and 8 students in his Year 10 drama class production, Can You Survive a Shakespeare Play? Jeremy loves performing in Beauty and The Beast. He enjoys playing the comical protagonist, Lumière, as he is a fun, happy and joyful character.
Emma Ashley as Plumette (Riverview)
Emma is delighted to be playing Plumette the feather duster and co-choreographing for this production. Emma attends school at Pymble Ladies’ College, loves being on stage and has been performing since she was two-and-a-half. This is her seventh production performing with Lane Cove Theatre Company but she also enjoys helping backstage with other productions. Highlight productions for Emma have been Aladdin, Jack and the Beanstalk and The Jungle Book (with Lane Cove Theatre Company) as well as Wind in the Willows and Stories in the Dark (with Pymble Ladies College).
Emma’s favourite part of musicals is dancing. She has been dancing for 13 years now doing styles, Ballet, Tap, Jazz, Lyrical and Contemporary with Red Shoes Dance and Lane Cove Dance Academy. Emma has loved choreographing for this production and hopes everyone enjoys the big musical numbers as well as all the hard work the cast and crew have put in.
Haydon Ashley as Cogsworth (Riverview)
Haydon is excited to be playing Cogsworth in this production. This is Haydon’s sixth year involved in productions with Lane Cove Theatre Company – his role as Frey/Frost in The Snow Queen being a highlight. Haydon attends school at Newington College in Stanmore and enjoys taking drama as an elective. He loves participating in the local theatre because it gives him a chance to perform with his friends in the community. Haydon has also had been a part of productions with his school including Spamalot and Romeo and Juliet playing Juliet. Haydon’s other artistic interests include improv theatre and hip-hop dance. He is looking forward to many more years treading the boards and hopefully in a new performing arts centre in Lane Cove. He hopes that you enjoy your TIME watching this production of Beauty and the Beast.
Media: for more information, great photos by Kathryn Thomas, interviews, review tickets and more, contact Geoff at Sirmai Arts Marketing t: (02) 9345 0370 m: 0412 669 272 e: [email protected]
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