War diaries brought to life

Pupils Antonia Hardman and Daniel Fisher with actors Phil Marriott and Felicity Houlbrooke.
Pupils Antonia Hardman and Daniel Fisher with actors Phil Marriott and Felicity Houlbrooke.
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PUPILS from across the Fylde coast brought Anne Frank’s famous diary to life.

Around 300 children took to the stage to direct their own scenes from the harrowing tale about a Jewish family hiding in an annex in Amsterdam during the Second World War.

The pupils took part in the workshop to coincide with the stage version of the diary – performed at Blackpool’s Grand Theatre in Blackpool this week.

Nine and 10-year-old pupils in Year Five at Marton Primary School were among the hundreds of school children enjoying the event.

Kiya Harnet, said: “Although it was very moving and made me cry there were bits in it that were humorous.”

Chloe Audsley, said: “It really made the book come to life.

“It helped us with our war work we have been doing.”

Amrin Golam, said she had learned new things about the harrowing diary.

She said: “I now know things which I didn’t about Anne Frank. She was different to what I had expected.”

Mrs Alice Coyle, assistant head at Marton Primary, thanked The Grand Theatre for the opportunity.

She said: “The children have had the opportunity to take part in workshops in school and at the theatre and that preparation supports higher order thinking.

“The quality of their questions and responses to the production of Anne Frank has been excellent.

“What a stimulating programme and opportunity.

“Thanks to everyone at the theatre and company.“

Celine Wyatt, engagement and learning officer, said: “The Grand Theatre is really thrilled by the feedback that we have received from the schools who took part in the Diary of Anne Frank project.

“More than 1,000 children and young people from all over Lancashire and Blackpool have been to the theatre to see The Diary of Anne Frank. This quality production has supported their knowledge and understanding of the holocaust and of the Second World War. Schools say it has been a powerful way of communicating the horror of the holocaust and setting it in a personal context for the children and young people.

“The Grand Theatre is committed to using theatre as a platform for offering innovative and challenging approaches to teaching and learning as well as personal development.”