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Telford teens on track for stardom after bagging prestigious places

By Deborah Hardiman | Telford | Theatre & Comedy | Published:

Two teenage friends will be following in the footsteps of Hollywood star Daisy Ridley when they take up places at a prestigious performing arts school.

Imogen on stage

Imogen Ball and Brook Jenkins, both aged 15, are celebrating after securing a place at Tring Park School for the Performing Arts.

Brook is currently a pupil at Hadley Learning Community, in Waterloo Road, Ketley, and Imogen at Wrekin College, Sutherland Road, in Wellington.

They have been honing their dance and theatre skills at The Arts Centre Telford (TACT) for many years.

Imogen, of Sheriffhales, said: "I'm really excited about starting the next chapter of my life and cannot wait to see how Tring Park will help me grow both academically and as a performer.

Imogen Ball

"I'm so grateful for this opportunity to study with students who are already of a very high standard."

She has attended TACT from the age of nine when she first went there to audition for the part of young Jane in Jane Eyre the Musical and became hooked on musical theatre.

More recently she has performed the roles of Elle Woods in Legally Blonde, Nancy in Oliver! and Wednesday Addams in The Addams Family and trains in performing arts five evenings a week and Saturdays at the centre, in Holyhead Road, Ketley.

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Brook, who lives in Telford, said: "Deciding what to study at A-Level was very tricky, as I am both academic and have a passion for the Arts.

Brook Jenkins

"Tring Park School that recognises the importance of academic ability as much as it does creativity and performance.

"Being able to surround myself with like-minded, motivated and professional people, both students and staff, will help me thrive and I cannot wait to start my journey at Tring Park."

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His love of performing arts was ignited when he took part in his year six school play at Tibberton Primary School and his teacher told his parents that he had a natural talent for the stage.

He later joined TACT and since then has performed in many shows including James and the Giant Peach, Les Miserables, The Addams Family and Oliver!

Brook Jenkins

Last year he auditioned alongside 1,250 others for his first semi-professional show at Birmingham Hippodrome when he was among 40 to be cast in West Side Story. He has also reached the Great Big Dance Off' finals for three years in the row.

The pair will be hot-footing it to the Hertfordshire school this autumn which has seen big names such as Daisy Ridley, of Star Wars fame; Lily James, of Downton Abbey and Disney's Cinderella; and Thandie Newton, of Stars Wars Solo.

Tring based in a former Rothschild mansion that featured as a location for the 2015 Avengers movie Age of Ultron.

Deborah Hardiman

By Deborah Hardiman
@Deborahh_Star

Senior reporter for the Shropshire Star based out of the head office in Ketley. Covering the Telford area.

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