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 Post subject: Lewis Smallman - Billy
PostPosted: Wed Feb 10, 2016 2:58 pm 
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Billy
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Joined: Thu Mar 19, 2009 1:33 am
Posts: 17603
Location: Williamsburg, Virginia, USA
Here's Lewis's thread.

http://www.westendframe.com/2016/02/bil ... ot-uk.html

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 Post subject: Re: Lewis Smallman - Billy
PostPosted: Thu Mar 10, 2016 11:19 am 
Billy
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Location: Rhode Island, USA
Lewis's "Meet The Tour Billys" video is out:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mxp4RkePGoE


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 Post subject: Re: Lewis Smallman - Billy
PostPosted: Thu Mar 10, 2016 2:37 pm 
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Billy
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Location: Malverne (Long Island), NY
Was Smallman ever a Smallboy?

(sorry, I'm still waking up...don't throw a pillow at me)

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 Post subject: Re: Lewis Smallman - Billy
PostPosted: Fri Mar 10, 2017 12:16 pm 
Tall Boy

Joined: Mon Nov 09, 2015 8:02 pm
Posts: 150
Location: England
Express & Star article

http://www.expressandstar.com/entertainment/2017/03/10/billy-elliot-black-country-actor-12-talks-about-the-role/#4buUx1R0Ox4IsSRm.99

'I sometimes get butterflies before I go on stage. It is scary and exciting at the same time’.

These are the words of Black Country rising star Lewis Smallman, who for the next seven weeks is starring as Billy Elliot at Birmingham Hippodrome. The 12-year-old, from West Bromwich, landed his role in Billy Elliot the Musical last year and will take turns performing the lead character with three other boys. He earned a standing ovation for his final dance sequence on the show’s first night on Wednesday. Many of Lewis’ family and friends will be seeing him perform – alongside the dance teacher who inspired him to take up theatre. Lewis, who trained at Arabesque Dance Academy and Renaissance Arts in Birmingham, said: “I sometimes get butterflies before I go on stage. “It’s scary and exciting at the same time. I get really hyped up and I have loads of energy – but then I just release it all when I step on stage and dance. “I feel really energised coming to perform in Birmingham as so many of my friends and family are coming to see me here including my former dance teacher who first inspired me to perform. “It’s different to the other venues on tour as it really feels like coming home and the audiences have been absolutely amazing.” Lewis, who is also a keen gymnast and trains with Sandwell Flyers Gymnastic Academy in West Bromwich, was hand-picked to star as Billy in 2016. He is sharing the role with Adam Abbou, aged 13, from Liverpool, Emile Gooding, 11, from Reading, and Hayden May, 12, from Bath. A spokesman for the Hippodrome said it is ‘special’ that one of the leading roles was given to a young actor from the region. Laura Smith, head of communications at the theatre, said: “It’s a great privilege for Birmingham Hippodrome to play host to such an incredibly talented group of young actors. “And for one of those young actors to have grown up in West Bromwich makes this homecoming particularly special. “Lewis’ star-turn on Press night has been the talk of audiences this week, with Lewis’ final dance sequence earning him a standing ovation from the crowd. “As one of four youngsters playing the lead role in the first ever UK tour of Billy Elliot the Musical, it’s a phenomenal achievement, not to mention a great deal of hard work.” The musical is inspired by the British film released in 2000, which follows the journey of 11-year-old aspiring dancer Billy. Lewis was chosen for the role following nationwide auditions.


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 Post subject: Re: Lewis Smallman - Billy
PostPosted: Fri Mar 10, 2017 5:59 pm 
Billy

Joined: Mon Feb 14, 2011 11:54 pm
Posts: 6841
Quote:
Billy, played by a rotating cast of four young actors, was played in this performance by Lewis Smallman, whose roots in West Bromwich mean this is his local tour stop - and, what a performance to give in a venue so close to home! His Billy, quietly defiant in the face of adversity, is a tour-de-force mix of heartbreaking emotion, intense determination, and a clear passion for dance that is reflected in every scene. His journey through dance is stunning to behold, with a breathtaking and dreamlike Swan Lake sequence so sublime, gasps of wonder rose from the audience. The driven intensity of his version of 'Angry Dance', a culmination of the tensions that drive the first act, is a masterclass in performance from a star still so very young. If every of the Billy's, as I am undoubtedly sure they do, give a performance like this, it truly is a demonstration of some of the best young talent in the country.


http://www.redbrick.me/culture/review-b ... ippodrome/


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 Post subject: Re: Lewis Smallman - Billy
PostPosted: Fri Apr 07, 2017 10:30 pm 
Tall Boy

Joined: Mon Nov 09, 2015 8:02 pm
Posts: 150
Location: England
An interview with the Express & Star published 7th April. Text of article reproduced below :-

http://www.expressandstar.com/entertainment/2017/04/07/billy-elliot-west-bromwich-star-lewis-smallman-talks-ahead-of-birmingham-show/

The bright lights of the West Midlands biggest theatre are a long way from the fluorescent glow of the classrooms at George Salter Academy. But teen prodigy Lewis Smallman has made that quantum leap as he’s allowed time off from the school, in Davey Road, West Bromwich, to star in the biggest show of the spring. Lewis, 13, is one of four youngsters playing Billy Elliot at Birmingham’s Hippodrome Theatre in a huge production that runs until April 29.

Set in a small mining town in the north east of England, against the background of the 1984/’85 miners’ strike, Billy Elliot is the inspirational story of a young boy’s struggle against the odds to make his dream come true. He stumbles out of the boxing ring and into a ballet class where he discovers a passion for dance that inspires his whole community and changes his life forever. Featuring a timeless score by Elton John, sensational dance and a powerful story that has captivated millions around the world, Billy Elliot is a funny, uplifting and spectacular theatrical experience. Lewis is chuffed to bits to have landed the lead role. “This is what I’ve always wanted to do. It started when I did gymnastics. Then I stopped doing that and went to dance and enjoyed that even more than gymnastics. So I carried on doing dancing and then one day my dance teacher told me to audition for something.” He didn’t even know what it was for.

The audition, however, went well and, to cut a long story short, the results are there for all to see at Birmingham’s Hippodrome. He’d earned valuable experience in formative productions of other shows, featuring in Swan Lake with the English Youth Ballet and performing in The Sound of Music with the locally-based Trinity Players. “I’ve been doing this awhile,” he adds. “Swan Lake came along when I was only seven, so that was very hard. I was young and had only just got into dancing. They were teaching me moves that I didn’t know about. “The road to Billy Elliot really started three years ago, when I auditioned. We did a summer school and trained and then did that again for another two years, off and on. Eventually, I got the email and they asked me to go on tour.”

You’ve have imagined he’d have turned cartwheels – just like Billy. But not a bit of it. A tender 13-years-young he may be, but Lewis has his feet planted firmly on the ground. “I was a bit scared when they said yes though I was happy at the same time. I was scared because I didn’t know what would happen and who the other people in the show would be. But I was excited about meeting new people and it’s turned out well. “We’ve been to loads of different places and it’s been great fun.” He misses home when he’s performing in Newcastle, Cambridge and other parts of the UK. “It’s sometimes hard being away from home. But then at other times I just forget about home because I’m always busy so there’s no time to think. “There’s four of us playing Billy and we’re all good friends. We never really have arguments. Well, there’s one or two. But they’re not very often.”

Playing the Birmingham Hippodrome is the highlight of the tour. He sees mates from George Salter school, his parents and other relatives when he’s on stage. “I feel like I’ve got a home crowd every day because loads of my family are coming to see me. I haven’t done a show where there hasn’t been anyone there. And I always get more energetic when my family are there.” As he should. He owes them a lot. Mum Lynn, dad John and sisters Maicie and Ellie have been nothing but supportive. “My mum and dad were taking me to dance classes and to auditions all the time before I got this. They’re the ones who got me here and who’ve driven me up and down the country.” It’s them he has to thank when he’s in the middle of show, feeling as though he’s flying because the audience are going wild. “It feels amazing when we’re in the show. We get people standing up and clapping and that’s the best feeling ever. Sometimes the crowd put banners up. There’s always something crazy going on. It’s brilliant. I want to continue to do this after this tour finishes. I love it.”

His ambitions are wider, however, and he hopes to one day move into film. Stage has given him the perfect start and he hopes to build on that. “I want to be in films. I still want to be in musicals, of course, but I really want to try for TV and film. I watched the Billy Elliot film when I was a kid, before I auditioned. I thought this would be like the film but it’s totally different. It’s way different to the film.”

His time on the road means he’s little time to catch up with his mates at George Salter. But social media allows him to keep up to date – and allows them the chance to see what Lewis is up to. “The other kids are just really proud that I’m doing this. So it’s great. My friends come to shows and search me on the internet. I still do my schooling when I’m on the road. We have two teachers on the tour and there are lessons every morning for three hours.” In fact, the biggest challenge isn’t dazzling crowds each night. That comes easily to performers like Lewis. The biggest difficulty comes when the show stops and he has to go back to school. “Getting back to normal is the hard bit. You get used to being on the road then all of a sudden everything is different. It’s difficult adapting to being in a big class with uniforms where you have to sit down and stay in your seat.”

It is. But it’s never for long. Before he knows it, Lewis is back on the road.


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 Post subject: Re: Lewis Smallman - Billy
PostPosted: Fri Apr 07, 2017 10:50 pm 
Small Boy

Joined: Tue Nov 22, 2016 12:10 am
Posts: 47
Real Geordie wrote:
It’s sometimes hard being away from home. But then at other times I just forget about home because I’m always busy so there’s no time to think. There’s four of us playing Billy and we’re all good friends. We never really have arguments. Well, there’s one or two. But they’re not very often.

I would imagine the bond between the boys playing Billy, and the Michaels too, would be, if anything, stronger than in the fixed London show. The experience of touring, experiencing different venues, different audiences, adapting to the different stages and theatres adds a whole new dimension. The boys are all brilliant, it would be nice to think they will have formed friendships that will last beyond their time together on the show.


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 Post subject: Re: Lewis Smallman - Billy
PostPosted: Mon Nov 20, 2017 3:44 pm 
Tall Boy
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Joined: Mon Aug 29, 2011 2:09 pm
Posts: 203
Location: Germany
https://www.expressandstar.com/entertai ... pantomime/

Lewis will appear in the English National Ballet's adaption of 'The Nutcracker' at the London Coliseum this Christmas! (Not surprised, I found his dancing to be spectatcular.)


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