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24 September 2014

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July 2004
Midlands children to perform in BBC opera
Two boys at auditions (source: Ed Swinden)
Boys at auditions (source: Ed Swinden)

BBC Talent has announced the children (including two from the Midlands) who have been selected to take part in the film production of the Little Prince due to air in the Autumn on BBC Two.


BBC Talent
Full details of the scheme, and other searches for talent currently running.

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The Little Prince
Synopsis of the story.

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Oscar winning composer Rachel Portman adapted the classic French children's novel The Little Prince for performance as an opera.

Francesca Zambello will direct The Little Prince. BBC Wales Music will film it for BBC TWO.

Launched in 2000, it has so far offered 46 schemes and 585 contracts, showcases and on-screen opportunities. This year's schemes include:

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The chosen children are invited to join BBC Talent's residential Summer School at Sadlers Wells in London. There they will learn their roles and receive expert tuition in singing, dance and theatrical techniques.

Over 25,000 children applied online to take part in the BBC scheme. BBC Talent held audition workshops across the UK in May and June 2004 seeing over 6500 hopefuls. They were looking for great singers aged 7-16 who had never sung on television before for the lead roles of Rose and the Prince and a chorus of 36 places.

The lead role of the Rose will be taken by Mairead Carlin, aged 15 from Londonderry, with 11 year old Joseph McManners from Kent performing the role of the Prince.

The chorus includes Liam Lewis, aged 12 from Coventry and Kavita Parmar, aged 15 from Birmingham. The cast of children will perform the opera of The Little Prince alongside Lesley Garrett.

Tim gives a pep talk  (source: Ed Swinden)
Warm up exercises

Blue Peter will broadcast a special programme featuring the young singers training and following them as they deal with their first professional filming experience.

Angela Wallis, BBC Talent Executive Producer in charge of casting said:
"Each of the children selected is an exceptionally gifted performer with that sparkwhich really makes them stand out. We have an amazing mix of children many of whom have never sung opera before."

"They will be in the perfect environment to explore and develop their individual talents and this entire project could give rise to a new generation of classical performers."

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