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REVIEW: The History Boys, Conservatoire East

From start to finish West Suffolk College Conservatoire East's 'The History Boys' was packed with laugh-out loud quips, energy and impressive foreign language and regional dialect.

The play was performed in the theatre within the college in Bury St Edmunds with an all female cast consisting of drama students aged 16 to 19.

Director Han Schofield, head of performing and production arts at Conservatoire East, said: "This production has been both a pleasure and an education to work on.

West Suffolk College performance of The History Boys. Picture: Tony Kelly.
West Suffolk College performance of The History Boys. Picture: Tony Kelly.

"In 2006 when this play premiered on Broadway, the professional cast were subjected to three weeks of history lessons, before they even touched the script - we have not had that luxury.

"However, what this has meant for the cast is the in-depth research, the hours spent on pronunciation and the company discussions to put everything in context."

Set in a fictional school in Sheffield nine students are preparing for their Oxbridge entry examinations, taught by three teachers with very different teaching styles.

The performance was full of unexpected cursing, and wit which was lapped up by the audience.

Caitlin Justin delivered an astounding performance as Hector the beloved teacher who believes literature should be learned by heart and suppresses his homosexual desires, we soon learn of a more sinister side to Hector which is unfortunately paralleled by his unexpected demise.

Pippa Haddow as Irwin, Leah Smith as Posner and Charlotte Green as Dakin all delivered an outstanding performance as well as all of the other cast and crew who contributed to an exceptional performance.

The play runs until tomorrow, and tickets are still available for tonight and tomorrow's performances.

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