Students on the Foundation Degree in Performance at University Campus Oldham (UCO) will work with professional actors to develop a new theatre piece Lost Boy Racer, forming part of the cultural highlights celebrating the Tour de France’s ride through Yorkshire.
This brand new theatre piece will be created in residency at UCO with Julie Bokowiec, the writer and producer who will work with the students in April and rehearse with them in June. Julie said ‘We are thrilled to be able to develop our work in Oldham and to bring a new piece of theatre to audiences in Greater Manchester. Above all we are delighted to be able to offer this opportunity for students to observe and be a part of our creative process. Key to developing new talent is giving students the chance to rub shoulders with professional actors, gain insights into the workings of the theatre industry and first-hand experience of professional practice.”
Lost Boy Racer is a partnership production with the Lawrence Batley Theatre, Huddersfield where the world premiere takes place on 25 June before travelling to The Lowry in Salford Quays (Sat 28 – Sun 29 June), Harrogate Theatre (Wed 2 – Fri 4 July) and Theatre Royal Wakefield (Mon 7 – Tues 8 July). UCO students will be the supporting cast for two performances at The Lowry whilst the other theatres on the tour will recruit for a local supporting cast.
UCO Senior Lecturer in Performance, Tray Wilson said, “This creative partnership will provide a great experience for our students. We limit our course to small student numbers which enables us to foster and nurture a strong ensemble of performers. It’s fantastic that they will be involved both in the creation of a world premiere production with such an exciting creative team on our campus, as well as perform on stage at The Lowry.
Lost Boy Racer is a quirky northern comedy-drama with a touch of blood, sweat and tears, a large dose of fun, some off-the-wall bike action and a love story of sorts. It tells the story of Sean Racer, who used to be an energetic wildcat youth hooked on cycling. Now he’s an overweight, 40-something tax inspector on the brink of a personal crisis. Turning to Claude, an oddball sage like ex-pro cycle mechanic, and encouraged by the wily Linda, a serial tax evader keen to distract him from taking a closer look at her books, Sean hatches a plan to get his life back on track and on two wheels. He will fulfil a youthful dream; to ride the Tour de France.
Directed by Liz Postlethwaite, the show also features an extraordinary set by metal sculptor Tim Tolkien, great-nephew of Lord of the Rings author J R R Tolkien. He is a renowned English sculptor who has designed several monumental sculptures, including the award-winning Sentinel. The production will also feature a lighting design by Opera North’s Mike Lock and an original score by composer Mark Bokowiec.
UCO’s two year course offers a creative and practical route into a variety of career options. Teaching primarily takes place in its purpose built studio theatre and rehearsal studios. Practical work is supported and enhanced through research and analysis of contemporary theatre practices and cultural industries, and the viewing and analysis of live performance.
Tickets are now on sale for Lost Boy Racer at The Lowry (Box Office 0843 208 6000) & Lawrence Batley Theatre (Box Office 01484 430528)