February 2013
Novelist Annabel Pitcher visits Latymer
HIS YEAr’S main school play was the hugely ambitious
Cole Porter musical
Kiss Me Kate
. Effectively a musical
version of Shakespeare’s
The Taming of the Shrew
, this
classic Broadway musical delighted audiences for three nights
in the Great Hall from thursday 22 to Saturday 24 November.
the show tells the story of a warring showbiz couple, Fred
Graham and Lilli Vanessi, as the action alternates between
life backstage in a Baltimore theatre and onstage during the
try-outs for a new musical version of Shakespeare’s famous
comedy. Offstage bickering spills over on to the stage, with
hilarious consequences for all concerned.
Featuring a string of hit tunes including
Up Your Shakespeare
Always True to You Darling in My
, the production featured a large cast of some of the
best of Latymer’s actors, singers and dancers. With a band
composed entirely of students and a highly capable
backstage and technical team,
Kiss Me Kate
featured a large
proportion of the school community and the three
performances were all very warmly received by the
As before, our final dress rehearsal was performed to an
audience of local primary school pupils and other community
groups, all of whom were very vocal in their appreciation.
‘Wunderbar!’ indeed.
Nick Vause
Above: a scene from the show; left: pupils from West Lea
School who attended the dress rehearsal
a wonderful
morning exploring novels and
creative writing when Annabel
Pitcher visited to talk about her new
Ketchup Clouds
. Her previous book
My Sister Lives on the Mantelpiece
shortlisted for the Carnegie Medal and
won many awards, including the
prestigious 2012 Branford Boase Award
for an outstanding debut novel.
Ketchup Clouds
deals with big themes
of guilt and loss. Annabel spoke to a year
9 assembly. “i’m interested in how
decisions we make as teenagers have
consequences for the rest of our lives,”
she said.
she told the students how she had
always wanted to be a writer, and found
the inspiration for her first novel while
travelling in south America during a gap
year. she showed how she uses visual
images to form an imaginative picture of
the novel as a whole. ‘Guilt’ might be a
sinking ship, a man-eating plant or a
prison cell.
Annabel enjoyed leading a creative
writing workshop with a year 8 class,
where the students learned some
techniques to build up suspense at the
beginning of a horror story. she was
impressed by the enthusiasm of the
class. We hope that the morning will
have inspired some new authors!
Annabel then signed books in the small
Hall. We wish her every success with
Ketchup Clouds
(£9.99, orion Books) and
with future books.
Miranda McAllister
Above: Annabel Pitcher (centre) with
Miranda McAllister and Latymer students
at a book signing in the Small Hall
Kiss Me Kate
“Another opening,
Another show!”
1,2,3,4 6,7,8