Family follows Lauren's dream

Lauren Towns, 13, crossed the ditch to play Louisa in The Sound of Music. Photo / Supplied
Lauren Towns, 13, crossed the ditch to play Louisa in The Sound of Music. Photo / Supplied

A Kiwi family who uprooted their lives to help their daughter follow her dream say it's all worth it for a shot at stardom.

The Towns family have been living in Brisbane since January, moving from Auckland after 13-year-old Lauren was cast in a leading role as Louisa von Trapp in the London Palladium production of The Sound of Music.

Lauren said she was "really grateful" to her family for supporting her dream and happy she was making them proud.

"It's been a massive upheaval for them, especially my brother - but he wants to do theatre now too."

Although getting the part seemed like a long shot, when Lauren was cast the family didn't think twice about jumping across the ditch at short notice.

"There's no second thoughts. When you get an incredible opportunity like this you grab it with both hands," said Lauren's mother, Catherine Towns.

"Performing in front of thousands of people a night is a nervewracking experience for anyone, but Lauren said she was loving the thrill. It's so much fun."

Lauren was the only Kiwi kid to be cast in the production and one of 850 children to audition. Mrs Towns said her ambitious young daughter hopes to pursue a career on the stage. "It's Broadway or West End, nothing else."

The family found out Lauren had scored the part in December and moved to Queensland on January 17 so Lauren would make her first rehearsal the next day. The production opened at Brisbane's Lyric Theatre last month.

Catherine, Lauren and nine-year-old Adam Towns will be living overseas until the show ends in May, while dad Kane has been travelling from their home in Bayswater, Auckland, to stay with his family one week out of every month so he can continue working.

The change has been tough but the kids have adapted well, Mrs Towns said.

Adam was playing rugby league and learning Greek at his new school and Lauren was loving her time on set.

"When you're on a stage in front of 2000 people it's pretty exciting," Mrs Towns said.

Working with some of Australia's biggest names in musical theatre, such as Marina Prior and Jacqueline Dark, had been an incredible experience, she added.

"They're so nice and have been so helpful.

"We're just like a big family."

- NZ Herald

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