Belmont Grosvenor pupil flying high after winning part in Opera North’s production

15 October 2013

Belmont Grosvenor School pupil Ruby Johnson is combining her schooling with singing after winning a place in Opera North’s production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream.

The 10-year-old’s latest theatrical adventure sees her sharing the stage with some of the country’s leading opera singers in the magical production, which opened at Leeds’ Grand Theatre and Opera House last month.

As well as appearing on stage in Leeds as a fairy in the Shakespearean opera, Ruby will then join the Opera North cast on tour to Newcastle, Salford Quays and Nottingham.

Ruby, a pupil in Year 6 at independent prep school Belmont Grosvenor, is delighted to have been picked as one of 18 fairies in the Benjamin Britten opera – but she is no stranger to the professional stage.

A member of Belmont Grosvenor School’s musical theatre group, Curtain Call, Ruby has been singing and dancing since she was four-years-old.

Last year the 10-year-old appeared alongside Neil Morrissey at Leeds’ Grand Theatre in Oliver. She’s also appeared in a production of Macbeth at Ripley Castle as well as Harrogate Operatic Society’s production of The Sound of Music.

In A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Ruby dons false eyelashes and a blonde wig – and is singing alongside some of the UK’s leading opera singers.

Ruby said:

It is such good experience being on stage and singing with professional opera singers. At first I found the music hard to learn, as it was different from what I am used to, but I really love the score now.

It’s been a busy time – when I’m not rehearsing, I’m either doing my school work or sleeping. I don’t have time for anything else,” said Ruby, who lives in Killinghall with her parents and younger brother and sister.

Pam Dight, Deputy Headteacher at Belmont Grosvenor School, has already been in the audience for a performance of A Midsummer Night’s Dream and said she was proud of Ruby’s achievements on stage.

Pam Dight said:

Ruby has always loved music and drama and is a valued member of the school’s own theatre company, Curtain Call, as well as being involved in outside productions.

She is enthusiastic and talented – and I felt very proud that Opera North’s production was enhanced by the talent of one of Belmont Grosvenor School’s own pupils.

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