Night Of The Living Dead For Kids
Liz Crosthwaite • Published 21 Jun 2012 15:30 0 Comments
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GHOULISH GANG: theale Green Community School students Rosa McDowell and George Coker do the zombie.
TERRIFYING tales of zombies are for grown-ups, right? Wrong - as Theale Green Community School's production of Night Of The Living Dead for Kids proves.
Directed and adapted from the 1969 film script by writer and drama teacher Chris Lambert, the play is the final production in the school's 'trilogy of terror' plays. Harnessing the impact of the seminal zombie flick using ghoulish make-up, a spooky soundtrack, clever use of lighting and horrifically convincing acting from the 40 young cast members, it tells the tale of a group of mismatched characters battling a terrifying zombie apocalypse sweeping America.
Mr Lambert explained: "The story of NOTLD is very interesting - it fits in with old fairytales and fables and things like that. Kids are quite happy to explore fear and being scared. What excites them more than anything else is being able to scare other people!
"We have toned down the violence of the film quite considerably which has not made it any less scary; we use light and sound to create an atmosphere. The cast must all work together to maintain an atmosphere and I think they are very successful. I say to the audience before we start, if we have done our jobs right, this is going to be scary!"
Erin Tingle, 14, who plays Barbara, a young woman traumatised after losing her brother to the zombies, said: "It's different doing this kind of play - school plays are meant to be all lovely and fluffy! It's about the atmosphere, you have to trap the energy and focus it on the performance."
Amy Rushent, 15, who plays Helen, a protective mother who ends up being eaten by her zombified daughter, added: "I love these kind of plays, I think the whole idea is brilliant. I love the atmosphere that we have created."
Lucy Harverson, 15, who plays a TV commentator, said: "The good thing about the cast is that we are such a good team. Everyone is in it together."
The performance at South Street Arts Centre tonight (Friday) is sold out, but call 0118 960 6060 for returns.
l Read a review and more interviews at www.readingchronicle.co.uk/theguide
This article appeared in Reading Chronicle 21 Jun 12