Local talent in Sprite’s Shakespeare at Ripley

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Sprite Productions’ latest outdoors Shakespeare features two fledgling local actors in the chance of their young lifetimes.

This year’s production presents a new challenge for Sprite - and new fun for audiences.

Instead of picnicking in the elegant and sophisticated beauty of Ripley’s Walled Garden, this year’s audiences are enjoy ing their pork pies in the mysterious and characteristic woods.

Among the cast performing The Comedy of Errors currently running at Ripley Castle are James MacCallum and Georgina Rose Hanson.

Appearing alongside Sprite’s professional company of actors, James and Georgina are taking on roles in the famous Shakespeare play which artistic director, Hester Evans-Ford has set within the encampment of a 1920s travelling circus.

James MacCallum from Harrogate, age 19 attended St Aidans CofE High School. He studied drama at Knaresborough School of Speech and Drama.

James will be starting Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama in September for three years (previous students include Sir Anthony Hopkins.)He will be playing the part of Balthazar.

Georgina, age 19 from Otley, attended St Aidans CofE High School and studied drama at ACT Academy UK in Harrogate.

Georgina will be starting Read Dance and Theatre College in September where she gained the full Stage Scholarship.

She will be playing the Courtesan.

Sprite has been performing site specific theatre at Ripley for nine years. For the last four years it has spread the casting net to the local community.

Georgina said: “Spending my summer with Sprite is amazing. Just being able to learn from such brilliant professional actors is great, you just wouldn’t get this experience anywhere else at my age.”

James said: “This is the second time I have worked with Sprite but this year I have a part all of my own, the trust Hester gives us is great.”

Hester Evans-Ford “We are so happy to be able to involve community actors and to have found such amazing talent in Harrogate is great. As a local girl growing up here there was nothing like this and I am thrilled that I am able to offer them this opportunity”.

Tickets for The Comedy of Errors which runs at Ripley Castle until July 14 are available on 01423 770632 or from www.ripleycastle.co.uk