One students to make musical debut at New Wolsey Theatre this summer

left to right - Musical director Matthew Herbert, Composer Charlie Pittman

left to right - Musical director Matthew Herbert, Composer Charlie Pittman - Credit: Archant

A group of talented performing arts students in Ipswich will be dreaming the dream and making a host of memories this summer as they debut a new musical.

The musical entitled Bridge Over Oblivion has been penned by drama and performance studies students at One, whose work has impressed bosses at the New Wolsey Theatre so much that the theatre has agreed to debut the musical during its open season this July.

With a script written by 18-year-old Ashley Milne, lyrics penned by Rhiannon Culley, 17, and music composed by Charlie Pittman, 17, the youngsters have teamed up with other drama and performance groups across Suffolk for the occasion.

Delighted Charlie Pittman said: “It’s been brilliant, we have just started rehearsals and the cast is made up of local talent in Ipswich.

“It came from my love of musicals and singing from a young age. I wanted to do something like that but I never thought I could.”


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The aspiring composer had the idea in his head for around a year before approaching his fellow second year students, resulting in the project being written between April and August last year.

The story is set in 1960s New York and explores the ideas of love, conflict and mental illness, all put to the tune of a modern rock and pop score.

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“It’s a really nice thing just to put our skills together and make something as best we can,” Charlie added. “Our teachers have all been really supportive and I am really excited to see people’s reactions.”

Rehearsals are now well under way, and the group is planning a series of fundraisers to help pay for the production. A concert of show tunes at St Peter’s by the Waterfront raised more than £1,000, and offered the group the chance to debut some songs from the show.

“It went really well – people were asking what show those songs were from and they got a really good reception,” Charlie added.

As the rehearsals continue, the trio are now excited to realise their dream and see the show performed on stage.

Mr Pittman added: “We are just really excited now and getting a lot of reception we weren’t really expecting – we can’t wait for people to see it.”

The show will be staged at the New Wolsey Theatre on July 6 and 7.

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