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Live and clicking; Wet House writer Paddy Campbell's latest play returns to Live Theatre in November following a sell-out debut run in the spring. Sam Wonfor talks to two of the young cast bringing the story of a dysfunctional family - and a dysfunctional care system - to the stage.

Byline: Paddy Campbell's

Sophie Pitches, 17, from Tynemouth is a sixth-form pupil at Whitley Bay High School. She joined Live's Youth Theatre three years ago and has recently moved up into the 17-25s group. She plays Clara in Day of the Flymo.

How did you get started in the Youth Theatre at Live? I first found out about the Youth Theatre from my friend's mum, whose daughter is disabled and she wondered if I would like to go along and support. Both Issy and I really enjoyed Youth Theatre and did two presentations together as well as our Bronze Arts Awards. I have continued with Live and since then I've tried to get involved in as many available workshops offered.

Does the theatre hold your career ambitions? Absolutely. Youth Theatre has really helped me to develop my acting not just through the weekly sessions, but also having the opportunity to see new and upcoming live theatre. I'm in the process of applying to drama schools.

What would be your dream role? I've always been fascinated with the character of Ophelia in Hamlet and would love to play her one day.

What's the best thing you've ever seen at Live Theatre? I think it was actually the first play that I came to see at Live a few years ago. I saw a solo performance written by Alistair McDowall called Captain Amazing, which was a monologue performed by Mark Weinman about an everyday superhero. I was blown away by the mix of touching real-life problems and interspersed interactions with Batman that ensued.

Tell us a bit about your character in Day of the Flymo.

I play the part of Clara, a 14 (nearly 15) year-old private school girl who plays the clarinet and meets Liam at a bus stop. But why isn't she in school...? Without giving too much away, can you tell us a bit about the story? Liam and Becca have a difficult home life, but when a caring social worker gets involved, things should get better. Shouldn't they? Who is your favourite character in the play? I just think the character of Liam is absolutely fantastic as Paddy gives us an insight into his more serious side just as he does his silly, excitable one too, and is very well portrayed by Kalem.

What is your favourite scene? There is a brilliant scene between Liam and Becca where they compare the differences in their education, and it manages to be simultaneously hilarious and poignant.

Kalem Anthony Patterson, 14, from Crawcrook, is a pupil at St Thomas More, Blaydon, He has been a member of Live's Youth Theatre for around two years. He plays Liam in Day of the Flymo.

How did you get started in the Youth Theatre? I had been involved with another drama school in Newcastle and a friend of mine was going to Live. The first time I attended Live Theatre was to do a taster group and I really enjoyed it.

Does the theatre hold your career ambitions? Yes, I would love to do more theatre work. I am looking to continue acting as a career.

What would be your dream role? I would like to do a lead role in an action movie or something similar.

What's the best thing you've ever seen at Live Theatre? I haven't really seen anything, just performed there so far.

Tell us a bit about your character in Day of the Flymo.

I play the role of Liam who has ADHD and is always getting into bother. He doesn't go to school and takes legal highs. He is involved with the local authority who are trying to take him into care.

Without giving too much away, can you tell us a bit about the story? It's about a dysfunctional family whereby Liam's dad was a bully and was sent to jail for domestic violence against Liam's mother Karen.

Who is your favourite character in the play? My favourite character is Clara because she is more than what meets the eye, she has a lot going on behind closed doors.

What is your favourite scene? The last scene because it mixes seriousness with a bit of humour, this is known as juxtaposition.

Day of the Flymo is at Live Theatre from November 12 to 21. Call 0191 232 1232 or visit www.live.org.uk to book tickets.

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Young actors Sophie Pitches and Kalem Patterson star in Paddy Campbell's latest play, Day of the Flymo
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:The Journal (Newcastle, England)
Date:Oct 27, 2015
Words:749
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