Local actors take to the stage with RSC

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Six local amateur actors have been cast in the Royal Shakespeare Company’s forthcoming production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream.

Part of the Belvoir Players, they will play the roles of the ‘Mechanicals’ when the production visits the Grand Opera House between May 31 and June 4.

Some of Shakespeare’s best loved characters, the ‘Mechanicals’ (including the iconic role of Bottom the Weaver) are an under-prepared, yet lovable bunch of craftsmen and women who put themselves forward to entertain royalty at the end of the play.

In Belfast the roles will be played by Christopher Curry (Quince, the Carpenter), Christopher Darcy (Snout, the Tinker), Trevor Gill (Bottom, the Weaver), Maggie Gorman (Starveling, the Tailor), Jessica McGreevy (Flute, the Bellows Mender), Robert McGregor (Snug, the Joiner).

Marking the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare’s death in 2016, the local group will perform alongside a cast of 18 professional actors and creative team, led by RSC Deputy Artistic Director, Erica Whyman.

Trevor, who has been an actor and director with Belvoir Players for five years, will be stepping into the coveted role of Bottom and is eagerly looking forward to the curtain going up on opening night. “We auditioned with several other companies over a weekend at the Lyric Theatre,” explained Trevor.

Midsummer's Nights Dream cast at the Clapham Rehearsal Rooms, London on the 12/12/2015. Photo: David Tett

Midsummer's Nights Dream cast at the Clapham Rehearsal Rooms, London on the 12/12/2015. Photo: David Tett

“It was a pretty intensive weekend and then we had four nerve-wrecking weeks to wait until we found out we had been selected. There was much rejoicing when we found out.”

The local actors have been rehearsing via videolink between their Theatre and London and Trevor, who has one of the bigger roles, has been over to London to rehearse with the professionals.

“Rehearsals have been going well,” he continued. “We are starting to get nervous now. It has been fascinating to work with the professional company.

“They have been immensely positive throughout and they have treated us as a part of the Royal Shakespeare Company, which has been a real treat. We are really flying the flag for Northern Ireland and we hope everyone will come along to the show to cheer us on.”

As well as the week of performances in Belfast, Trevor and the other Belvoir Players will be travelling to Stratford Upon Avon in July to perform the final three shows with the RSC in their home theatre.

Tickets are priced from £18.50 and can be purchased via telephone on 028 9024 1919 or by visiting www.goh.co.uk.