Lamont Drama School’s success stretches far and wide!
For the last couple of years, Mrs. Lamont has been teaching a former pupil by skype who moved away to Manchester. Despite the move, Ahmed Hassan was determined to continue his lessons with Mrs. Lamont and has gone on to achieve great success in his LAMDA examinations – with the help of new technology!
Now Mrs. Lamont has taken one step quite a bit further. She teaches her own grand-daughter, five-year-old Isla Gie on FaceTime and skype in Cyprus! Isla recently took her first LAMDA exam and was awarded Distinction with 89 marks.
Isla thoroughly enjoyed the experience as we can see from the photograph taken of her just before her exam.
Congratulations to Kathryn McEvilly, Georgia Taft and Lucia Shakeshaft for successfully auditioning for the National Youth Theatre.
Current NYT member 17-year-old Rory Rushton visited the girls’ Saturday morning drama class to give them some tips about what to expect. Rory, successfully completed the NYT residential summer course last year and is now an NYT Ambassador. He said: “Everyone will tell you that it’s going to be the best experience of your life! It is! I made loads of new friends and had two great weeks in London.”
Said Mrs. Lamont : “Well done girls! I’m so proud of you. Have a ball this summer!”
Lamont Casting Agency is increasingly carving itself a niche for being a provider of excellent voiceovers.
Recently, agency members have provided the voices for an array of cameos and commercials for TV, video and radio.
Agency member and drama school pupil 16-year-old George Miller tackled a difficult subject in a video about about ACEs (adverse childhood experiences) and how they go on to affect people in later life. George provided the teenage voice of a man at different stages in his life. The video will be used by councils nationwide.
Twelve-year-old Elizabeth McEvilly has done many voiceovers through the years. Her latest is for Wilko.
Other pupils in demand, after impressing with their clear and characterful voices, are 13-year-old Joe Houghton, 10-year-old Dominic McEvilly, 11-year-old Grace Wingate and 13-year-old Georgia Taft.
Georgia also recently successfully auditioned for the NYT so will be heading to London this summer to take part in their two-week residential course.
Keep speaking up, guys!
Lamont pupils eight-year-old Evie Clark from Southport and seven-year-old Lori-Jo Quinney
From Bootle starred in the RSC and CBeebies’ production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream.
The production, which was filmed at Liverpool’s Everyman Theatre was aired on William Shakespeare’s birthday, as part of BBC’s month-long Shakespeare Festival celebrating of one of the greatest writers of all time.
Said Evie: “I absolutely loved filing A Midsummer Night’s Dream. The make-up and costumes were amazing and I loved playing two parts. I was a page as well as Peaseblossom which meant I got to wear two costumes instead of one!”
Lori Jo, agreed: “I liked being in the theatre because all the fairies made it feel really magical. Being on TV means I can keep it forever.”
Children’s favourites Justin Fletcher and Ben Faulks (Mr Tumble and Mr Bloom) starred alongside CBeebies presenters Andy Day, Rebecca Keatley, Pui Fan Lee and Chris Jarvis. William Shakespeare was played by CBeebies’ Robert The Robot, Steven Kynman and Justin Fletcher played Bottom.
The week long experience of rehearsals, dress rehearsals and filming came after Evie auditioned for the role several weeks earlier.
She explains: “I was very excited when I went for my audition. I was auditioning to be one of the fairies so the night before I read the story and learnt about the characters.
“My audition was with two casting directors from the BBC, called Angela and Lucy. They were really nice. When it was my turn I went into the audition room and they asked me, “do you know the story?” I retold them the story from start to finish, and they said, “Wow, you knew that really well.
“I had to choose to be one of the fairies and then I got to say some lines and mime a part of the story. Then they filmed me performing a few times. At the end of the audition they asked me if I had any questions to ask them and I did! I asked them “If they could pick one of the fairies which one would they choose and what would they wear. They were excited to tell me their favourites. They were really friendly and I really enjoyed the audition. I found out the following week that I had got a part. I was SUPER HAPPY because this is the first part I’ve ever got!
“Filming with everyone was even more fun than the audition. I just didn’t want the week to end!”
Former Lamont pupil Lauren Ogden has been picking up rave reviews for her acting – even before finishing her degree.
Our lovely Lauren – now known in Spotlight as Laurie Ogden – recently starred in How To Survive A Swarm Of Bees at the Lyric Hammersmith. She also appeared in two fringe plays – Staircases by Antonym Theatre and Dust never settles in Torchlight by Naked Feet Physical Theatre.
Lauren’s wonderful acting skills were spotted by a reviewer, who said: “in Staircases, Laurie Ogden should also be praised, not only for her impeccable range of hairstyles but also for her powerful delivery in the doctor and patient vignette. A brilliant idea, expertly executed. All involved should be very proud of what they’ve produced.”
Praise was equally high for Lauren in Dust Never Settles in Torchlight. “I was blown away, utterly blown away by this show. I feel confident in calling it the best piece of physical theatre I have seen in a very long time. The entire cast ebb and flow around each other in a manner that mesmerises the viewer mere seconds into the performance. The most memorable performance of the piece comes from Laurie Ogden, who you’ll remember from the previous review, in the role of Myrrha, who here serves as a living embodiment of how a vast array of relentless, devastating emotion can be conveyed without a single word spoken. Odgen is proof of the power of physical theatre when put into capable, dedicated hands. The choreography in itself is simply marvellous, but it takes the right actor to use that choreography to its fullest effect. Ogden is such an actor.
As well as wowing audiences on stage, Lauren has also done a commercial for Late Rooms.
Fantastic news, Lauren (or should we say Laurie!)
A Senior Casting Director from Hollyoaks (Lime Pictures) visited the drama studio recently to do some exciting casting workshops.
Said Mrs. Lamont: “Pupils had a great time honing their audition skills as well as having a lot of fun. We hope to make it a regular event.”
Lamont Casting has a long-history of providing cast members to the award-winning drama series.
In 2005, Lamont Casting member Hannah Rigby from St Helens got the role of Hannah Ashworth in Hollyoaks at the age of 15. She was given praise and recognition for her anorexia storyline in which she was nominated for various awards. Since leaving Hollyoaks in 2010, Emma has appeared in the West End and in numerous screen roles including Prisoners’ Wives, Ripper Street and Once Upon a Time in Wonderland.
Emma was a delightful member of the Lamont Casting Agency and we continue to follow her career with pride.
The upcoming casting workshop will give a new generation of talented Lamont Casting Agency members to shine.
Little Rosa Tinsley has the face of an angel but fans of the Channel 4 soap Hollyoaks will have recognised her as ‘young’ Lindsey Butterfield – the Gloved Hand Killer!
During the episode in which the identity of the murderer was revealed, eight-year-old Rosa acted out a flashback scene from Lindsey’s childhood when she shockingly pushes her sister into a lake.
The climax of the major storyline was shown as part of Hollyoaks’ 20th Anniversary Celebrations so was particularly exciting for Rosa to be part of the shock revelation.
Rosa’s mum, Victoria, said: “Rosa had an incredible time. She worked with a stunt co-coordinator and the director to perfect the action of pushing her sister into the lake. Fortunately, that involved a crash mat and no-one actually got wet! Her filming took place at the Lime Pictures studios and on location at Knowsley Hall.
Rosa added: “It was really exciting. When I was filming, the crew was also recording a high speed police car chase which was fun to watch from the actors’ Winnebago! I knew my story was part of a big storyline and I enjoyed keeping the plot a secret.”
The day after the episode was transmitted, Rosa went to London with her sisters and saw lots of London buses with the sign on the side of them saying: “Hollyoaks – One Killer Week”.
“It was funny to see the buses and know I was a part of it”, laughed Rosa.
Rosa Tinsley is a member of the Lamont Casting Agency.
Ten-year-old Freya Latham and 13-year-old Dominique Eccles are in big demand! They both successfully auditioned for professional pantomimes and are looking forward to joining their teams this Christmas. Freya will be performing at the Liverpool Empire in Dick Whittington.
Dominique is appearing at Southport Theatre in Aladdin.
Not only that, both girls have successfully auditioned to be part of SONG’s next production. SONG is the award-winning production company for 10-18-year-olds.
Freya, who recently achieved the exceptional Distinction marks of 94 and 95 in her LAMDA exams, will be performing alongside Sally Lindsay (Coronation Street, Mount Pleasant) as Fairy Fazakerley, Radio City’s Leanne Campbell as Alice Fitzwarren, Eric Potts as Sarah the Cook (Coronation Street), City Talk’s Pete Price as Alderman Fitzwarren and Kurtis Stacey (Emmerdale) in the title role of Dick Whittington. Freya’s delighted mum, Louise, said: “She is beyond excited. It was difficult to choose between the two pantomimes because both sounded really fun. In the end, she decided to join the Liverpool Empire’s team and she can’t wait to see the panto’s added bonus of a scene in 3D!”
Dominique will be performing alongside David Lonsdale (Heartbeat) as Widow Twankey and popular Radio City presenter Claire Simmo, Scott Wright, Ann Marie Davies and Laura Robson. Dominique’s mum, Gill, said: “We are incredibly excited about Dominique appearing in Aladdin. She is also looking forward to being in SONG’s ’80 Days Around the World’ production. It is the second year she will perform with them so that makes it even more special.”
Both girls are members of Lamont Casting Agency.
Lucas Frost is about to step on the wrong side of the law – but all for a good cause.
The 14-year-old is playing the Artful Dodger in BOS Musical Theatre Company’s production of Oliver!
The Lionel Bart favourite, opens at Southport Little Theatre, on October 3 to October 10, and Lucas can’t wait to play the lovable rogue.
“The Artful Dodger is a fantastic part to play but actually everything about the musical is great. We’ve got a professional 12 piece ‘traditional’ orchestra with strings, woodwind, brass and percussion so the wonderful music will really come to life,” said Lucas.
Playing Fagan’s sidekick is not the first time Lucas has stolen the limelight. He won a prestigious NODA award for ‘Most Entertaining/Comedy Performance in a Youth Musical for his part of ‘Fat Sam’ in Bugsy Malone when he was just 12.
Talented Lucas is a member of the Lamont Casting Agency.
This summer, three Lamont teenagers had the unique experience of taking part in the National Youth Theatre’s two-week residential course in London. Rory Rushton (16) from Birkdale, Tom Lyon (17) from Formby and Dan Anderson (17) from Liverpool were split across 10 groups for the duration of the course, coming together at the end to perform their group performance pieces which they had devised on the theme of “Extreme”.
Rory who wants to study Economics at university and Tom who wants to study Drama at drama school or university, talk about their experiences below:-
Rory Rushton was a member of Course 9
My NYT adventure began with an intense audition day in February at the Lowry in Manchester. During that day, we spent the morning doing a variety of improvisations. I’d been told by Mrs Lamont that the directors wanted to see great team players who showed no inhibitions whatsoever. Not so easy when you’re being asked to be a pomegranate! Later on, we were judged individually and I performed “Living on the Edge”, a black comedy based on the banking crisis in the City. In May, I got an email to say I was in and before I knew it, it was August and I was checking in to the McMillan Student Village in South East London ready to start the following morning.
I can’t lie, it was very daunting knowing no-one. A lot of the students were from London and, even though I’ve done lots of drama festivals and LAMDA exams, they all seemed much more worldly than me. But it quickly got better and I can honestly say that the whole experience was truly life-changing. I made so many friends, learnt so much and felt my confidence soaring. From a bit of a shaky start, it turned into one of the most fun and positive things I’ve ever done and I’m now going back next year as an ambassador to help other ‘newbies’ settle in and get as much out of the experience as I did.
I’m never going to be the next Daniel Craig but I’ve got some great memories from Summer 2015 and I hope my experience as an NYT member will at least give me an edge in the boardroom!
Tom Lyon was a member of Course 5
My two weeks with the National Youth Theatre in LABAN was an amazing experience which I will never forget. It was great to work and socialise with people who all have a common interest in the arts. I would like to say a thank you again to Mrs Lamont for helping me to be successful in my audition.
The whole thing was great, but I particularly enjoyed creating our devised pieces. Our course director selected the best ideas to expand into an original piece and I felt our final performance was a great success.
On one evening of the course, the directors put on an NYT Alumni Q&A session which was extremely informative and useful. The NYT opportunity came at just the right time for me as it was a taster for Drama School or Drama at university.