The great W.C. Fields said “never work with children or animals”, but award-winning opera director and producer Ellen Kent says she loves to do both.
And at Lynn Corn Exchange on Sunday, local drama students will feature in the production of Puccini’s La Boheme, along with a two-year-old dog taking his stage bow.
The children’s roles in the market scene with Parpignol the toy seller will be played by students of King’s Lynn Theatretrain, and older students and parents will swell the chorus too.
Centre director Ruth McKechnie said: “We are always delighted to work with our friends at Opera International, and La Boheme is one of our favourites. This is an excellent opportunity for students to become familiar with operatic works, and experience working with a professional company with an excellent reputation.”
The Lynn production will feature the critically-acclaimed international soprano Alyona Kistenyova as Mimi and Olga Perrier, the French soprano, as Musetta. This classic tale of Parisian love and loss features many famous arias including Your Tiny Hand is Frozen, They Call Me Mimi and Musetta’s Waltz.
It is in a café scene, with brass bands and lots of street children, when Kit the King Charles Spaniel will make his appearance as Musetta’s dog – with his owner Clare Harris close by as Musetta’s maid.
Clare, of Porch Farm, Clenchwarton, said: “Last month I noticed a piece in the Lynn News regarding the search for a small dog to star with Musetta in Ellen Kent’s production of La Boheme at the Corn Exchange.
“I sent off the details of my King Charles Spaniel and to my great excitement he has been chosen! He is very good natured, rather cheeky and loves a lot of fuss.”
Kit is named after Sir Christopher Myngs, a British naval officer and privateer who was born in Norfolk and died in 1666; he attends training classes at Two Legs Four Legs in Lynn, run by Samatha Grove, and has attained the Bronze Good Citizen Dog Award.
Curtain up for La Boheme is at 7.30pm on Sunday; for ticket details call the box office on 01553 764864 or visit www.kingslynncornexchange.co.uk