Harry’s lead role in musical drama

Treading the Boards: Harry Kenyon, 13, of Matlock, who is appearing in the Derby Live play The Go-Between, based on the novel by L.P. Hartley.
Treading the Boards: Harry Kenyon, 13, of Matlock, who is appearing in the Derby Live play The Go-Between, based on the novel by L.P. Hartley.

While having a laugh with his friends at the town’s drama club, teenager Harry Kenyon never dreamed he would be starring in a new play.

But the aspiring Matlock actor is now set for big things after landing the lead role in musical drama The Go-Between.

Harry, 13, who lives at Lime Tree Road with his parents Wendy and Steve and sister Kitty, joined Steep Turnpike Youth Theatre to spend more time with his friends.

He was encouraged to audition for the lead role of Leo by youth theatre leader Allie Spencer.

Harry said: “I went along for a bit of fun and just for some extra practice. I never thought it would lead to anything.

“I’ve not done anything like this before – it’s really, really new to me.

“I only went to youth theatre because my friends were going. I knew I enjoyed acting but never thought of it as a career but now that has all changed and I’m thinking that this is what I want to do.”

The play has been adapted from L.P. Hartley’s unforgettable romantic novel – a poignant story of childhood innocence and hidden memories – and will run at Derby Theatre from Thursday, October 6 to Saturday, October 29.

The story focuses on young Leo who is unwittingly enlisted into an adult affair of deceit and forbidden passion.

Acting as the go-between for the beautiful, upper-class Marian and tenant-farmer Ted, Leo becomes embroiled in a doomed love affair which will shape his life forever.

The musical features young local talents in the major roles alongside a cast of nine professional actors.

Harry said: “There’s so much emotion in the story it’s unbelievable – I really think there’s a touch of magic in it.”

He added: “At first I was very, very nervous but I have got to know everyone and I feel more confident and excited about it now.

“Everyone has been lovely but I feel they all have so much more experience than me.”

Proud family and friends are set to hire a mini bus to Derby to see Harry’s performance.

Mum Wendy said: “He has never been to any auditions before and we told him to go for it, enjoy it but not to expect too much – a lot of other children are used to auditioning or go to drama school.

“For Harry to have landed this role is quite amazing.”