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Friday, 18 April 2014

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Carlisle teenager to perform at Edinburgh Fringe Festival

A teenage actor “cannot believe” he will be performing at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival.

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Hats off to him: Jed Buttress, 16, from Cargo who is to perform in a comedy musical

Jed Buttress, from Cargo, near Carlisle, has been cast in a “substantial” role in the sci-fi comedy musical, Terror on Presley Beach.

The 16-year-old Trinity School pupil will play one of four teenagers in the play, which will run for five days in August at the world famous festival of arts.

Jed said: “Before, if anyone mentioned Edinburgh Fringe Festival I’d have said it’s a massive thing, but now I’ve found out I’m going to be performing it doesn’t seem real.

“It’s like, if I’ve got there then it can’t be as big as I thought. It hasn’t hit me yet, I don’t think it’s real!”

The musical production has been written by Keith Baty, an English lecturer at the University of Cumbria. It is not the first time Mr Baty, who previously taught at primary and secondary schools in the area, has managed to get a play to be hosted at the festival.

In 2010 he featured in the News & Star, when Mr Baty admitted getting a play to the Fringe was any playwright’s dream.

It is now Jed’s turn to transform his dream into reality.

“Keith Baty taught me at primary school,” the teenager recalled. “My parents and grandparents kept in contact, and when they heard he was doing this play they put in a good word for me. “The play is ridiculous, but in the best possible meaning of the word. It’s a comedy and it is weird and out there and bizarre.”

Jed is currently engrossed in revising for his final few GCSE exams, but insists learning his lines – and singing in front of a crowd – will not be a problem.

“I’ve got plenty of time to learn them,” he insisted, “it is performing at the venue at the Fringe that makes me nervous.

“You have a lot of successful actors and famous comedians performing at venues all around you; to be a part of it is surreal.”

The student’s parents, Pauline and Simon, are overjoyed at his success but determined to keep his feet firmly on the ground.

Pauline said: “We are really pleased and very proud.

“As long as he concentrates on his GCSEs first, then I think it is a great chance and a fantastic experience for him.”

Terror on Presley Beach will be performed at the Paradise in the Vault venue, Edinburgh, from August 13 to 15.

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