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Local child actors do their research for Wordsworth play

L-R: Theo, Oscar and Tom. Photo by Steven Barber
L-R: Theo, Oscar and Tom. Photo by Steven Barber

Three local boys starring in a new production about William Wordsworth at Keswick’s Theatre by the Lake researched their role this week at the poet’s birthplace in Cockermouth.

Keswick twins Oscar and Tom Pye-Kendall (aged 11) will share the role of Wordsworth’s son Thomas in the production of William Wordsworth, opening on 31 March, with Theo Fulton (12, from Bothel) understudying them.

Their research session and photoshoot at Wordsworth House and Garden involved the boys trying on costumes, making clap bread (traditional bread from the period), playing with 19th century toys and exploring the house and gardens with National Trust guides from the house. Tom said: ‘“It was great to know what clothes they would wear. I wasn’t expecting such a long shirt and I never knew there was such a thing as clap bread”. His twin Oscar said “I’m really looking forward to acting on stage at Theatre by the Lake” and Theo added: “I’m looking forward to meeting the actors and seeing what they’ve done in the past”.

William Wordsworth is the new play by award-winning writer Nicholas Pierpan. It explores a period of conflict when his ambitions as a poet clashed with his duties as a father.

It is the theatre’s first Main House production under new artistic director Conrad Lynch and boasts a distinguished cast including Olivier-award winning actor Joseph Mydell as patron of the arts George Beaumont. John Sackville, recently seen in Netflix series The Crown, plays Wordsworth.

The play’s director Michael Oakley said: “The role of Thomas is a key one in the play and we’re thrilled to have three local boys joining the cast for this very special production; we hope they’ll have a great time.”

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