French mum saves the day for teen actor

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Whanganui High School's VIncent Collins will be performing in Shakespeare's Julius Caesar in Dunedin next month.
Whanganui High School's VIncent Collins will be performing in Shakespeare's Julius Caesar in Dunedin next month.

Although Whanganui High School student Vincent Collins is not taking drama this year, he has been selected to participate in National Shakespeare Schools Production (NSSP) 2016 in Dunedin next month.

Vincent is one of 48 student actors and directors heading to the national event after attending the regional Shakespeare Globe Centre New Zealand (SGCNZ) held in Whanganui in April and going on to represent the Region at the National Festival held in Wellington at the beginning of June, where 23 regions gather to share their Shakespeare.

"I acted in a scene from Henry V with my friend Caitlyn Friedel which was quite challenging," said Vincent.

Playing the servant of Caitlyn's character, Catherine of Valois, the French princess who would marry Henry, Vincent had to speak two languages.

"It was hard because neither of us knew any French.

"Fortunately my mum is French and she helped us learn the lines."

Although he did not know what the French words meant, Vincent's performance was good enough to earn him selection and he will be acting in a production Julius Caesar at NSSP in Dunedin.

The 40 minute slice of Julius Caesar will be directed by Colin Spicer and there will be an equal portion of The Comedy of Errors directed by Kim Morgan and of Macbeth directed by Stuart Devenie.

Performances will be publicly held on 30 September 2016 at Maurice Joel Theatre, Otago Boys' High School and 1 October 2016 at the College of Education Auditorium, University of Otago.

Vincent said this is his first visit to Dunedin and he will be spending a week there along with all the other participants.

At the end of the week, 24 of the 48 students will be selected as members of SGCNZ Young Shakespeare Company 2017 and continue their journey to The Globe in London next July.

This year SGCNZ are commemorating the death of William Shakespeare 400 years ago and celebrating their own 25th year anniversary.

- Wanganui Chronicle

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