Where . . . art thou, Romeo?

JONATHAN CARSON
Last updated 05:00 16/11/2012
Waikato school seeking Romeo
BEN CURRAN/Fairfax NZ
SEARCH PARTY: Clockwise from top left) Kelly-Ann Letcher, 14, Savanna Simpson, 14, Stephanie Wallis, 15 and Zoe Finlay, 14 wait for their Romeo.

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"O Romeo, Romeo, Where in Waikato art thou Romeo?"

More than 600 teenage girls at Waikato Diocesan School for Girls are "desperately seeking" a strapping young man to play the lead in its post-apocalyptic rendition of Romeo and Juliet.

"Obviously we don't come equipped with boys," head of drama Lee Armitage said.

"It's not something we have hidden in a cupboard that we can pull out every two years when we do our major production."

So, the search is on for one young man, aged between 15 and 20, with acting experience, a good voice and, preferably, looks to match.

It would also be a bonus if he can dance.

The right candidate will get to fulfill the schoolboy dream of infiltrating an all-girl private school and being surrounded by a "sea of females" for two months of rehearsals and performances.

And should the production stick to the script, he may even land a kiss with his Juliet.

"Well, that's why I'm surprised we don't have them lining up at the door to be honest," Ms Armitage said.

"They're all shy this year."

She would not be drawn on the chance of a real-life romance blossoming, but, mathematically, the odds would be stacked in Romeo's favour.

The school roped in brothers or boyfriends for previous productions, but this year the supply has run dry.

Ms Armitage said she also wanted to cast a young man to play Romeo's best mate, Benvolio.

"Just so it's not literally one poor Romeo stuck in a sea of females."

Poor Romeo? Unlikely.

The production, scheduled for early April 2013, will set Shakespeare's tragedy in a world destroyed by nuclear war.

"We're going to emphasise the dark, gritty side of it, and then this beautiful love story comes out of it, but it's still tragic because they die."

Ms Armitage hoped to cast Romeo within the next two weeks.

Would-be Romeos can call the school on 07 855 2038 or email larmitage@waikatodiocesan.school.nz.

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- Waikato Times

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