Harry potter actor rehearsing for role at Stevenage theatre

ACTOR James Williamson is busy rehearsing for The Adventures of Mr Toad at the Gordon Craig Theatre in Stevenage, having finished filming for Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. The 25-year-old, who has lived in Walkern all his life, takes on the role o

ACTOR James Williamson is busy rehearsing for The Adventures of Mr Toad at the Gordon Craig Theatre in Stevenage, having finished filming for Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows.

The 25-year-old, who has lived in Walkern all his life, takes on the role of a policeman and a weasel in this musical adaptation of Kenneth Grahame's The Wind in the Willows.

"It's a fairly comic role, and I have played a few comedy roles in the past," he said. "I have been doing shows at the Gordon Craig for six or seven years, with the last one being Footloose in August last year.

"I have worked with most of the cast of The Adventures of Mr Toad before, and it's always nice to see old faces. We can connect well.


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"The lead four are absolutely brilliant actors, and they all gel and connect really well together."

With beautiful costumes, inspired choreography, and catchy musical numbers such as Weasels Reign and Let's Jump Aboard, this production tells the story of the impulsive Mr Toad and his riverside chums.

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Asked what the audience can expect from The Adventures of Mr Toad, James said: "Lots of fun and laughter, and nice characters. Both kids and adults will love it - there is lots of humour adults will relate to."

Asked what James finds most difficult about performing on stage, he said: "I would say keeping up with the dance routines. They are always very fast-paced and you have to be alert."

He added: "I get excited nerves when I perform on stage, which gives me the adrenaline needed to perform well."

James, who has been acting since he was in his teens, did theatre studies at A-level and went on to study performing arts at the University of Hertfordshire.

He landed the role of a Death Eater - a bad wizard - in the final part of the JK Rowling series, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, after going for an audition at Leavesden Studios in Watford.

James, who began filming for Harry Potter in November, said he is unable to reveal the name of his character, but said: "I'm involved in the taking over of Hogwarts and attacking Hogwarts."

He said he enjoyed working alongside Hollywood stars Ralph Fiennes, who plays Harry Potter's arch-enemy Lord Voldemort, and Helena Bonham-Carter, who plays the Dark Lord's faithful follower Bellatrix Lestrange.

"It was fairly nerve-wracking, and the biggest thing I have done to date," he said.

Asked what the future holds, James said he has "quite a few things in the pipeline", with a number of auditions lined up and a number of castings he is waiting to hear about.

The Adventures of Mr Toad will run at the Gordon Craig from Wednesday, April 14, to Sunday, April 18, and tickets start from �14.40.

For more information and show times, call 01438 363 200 or visit www.gordon-craig.co.uk

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