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Norwich school's rugby stars tackle the stage

PUBLISHED: 21:53 06 November 2011

Principal actors in the Norwich School production of Guys and Dolls, who are also into their sport. From left, hockey player Hatty Ekbery, 17, who plays Sarah Brown; footballer Louis Merry, 17, who plays Nathan Detroit; rugby players Aaron Murphy, 18, who plays Benny Southstreet and Ed Bartram, 16, who plays Sky Masterson; squash player and Matt Dunnett, 17, who plays Nicely-Nicely Johnson. Picture: Denise Bradley

Principal actors in the Norwich School production of Guys and Dolls, who are also into their sport. From left, hockey player Hatty Ekbery, 17, who plays Sarah Brown; footballer Louis Merry, 17, who plays Nathan Detroit; rugby players Aaron Murphy, 18, who plays Benny Southstreet and Ed Bartram, 16, who plays Sky Masterson; squash player and Matt Dunnett, 17, who plays Nicely-Nicely Johnson. Picture: Denise Bradley

Archant copyright 2011

The Norwich School's forthcoming production of Guys and Dolls will be a rugged one.

A number of the cast – made up of students from the school in The Close, Tombland – will be more used to tackling each other than songs and dances, as the school’s rugby players swap the scrum for the song.

The musical opens at The Norwich Playhouse, St George’s Street, from November 16 to 19 and sees three rugby-playing students in principal roles, and some in the cast.

“School productions should include as many students as possible and bring out hidden talents, like learning to dance,” said Francis McIvor, senior tutor and director of the production.

The sporty leads have appeared in understudy and supporting roles in the school’s previous shows, but most of the “Crap Shooters” male chorus are making their stage debuts. And among their co-stars is a first team football player and a National Schools rowing champion.

Ed Bartram, 16, who is in the lower sixth form and in the men’s third rugby team, plays the lead Sky Masterson. He said: “Rugby and musical theatre share many key skills, such as teamwork, coordination and fitness.”

Tickets are available on 01603 630000 or from www.theatreroyalnorwich.co.uk

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