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Last Updated: Tuesday March 11 2008 16:09 GMT

Worksheet 1: Elliot boys win top theatre gong

Billy Elliot actors James Lomas, George Maguire, and Liam Mower
The three boys who share the lead role of Billy Elliot in the West End stage show have picked up a prestigious joint award for their work.

James Lomas and George Maguire, 15, and Liam Mower, 13, all won best actor at the Laurence Olivier Awards.

The boys are the youngest people to ever win an Olivier and it's the first time one has been awarded jointly.

The Billy Elliot stage show also won awards for best new musical, best choreographer and best sound design.

Only one of the three Billy Elliot stars, Liam Mower, still performs in the smash hit musical. The others had to step down once their voices broke.

The boys were particularly stunned by their win as top actor Ewan McGregor was also up for the same award.

When asked how he felt Billy star Liam Mower said: "I know he's a big Hollywood star and I didn't expect to beat him. It's outstanding."

Newsround interviewed James Lomas when he first auditioned to play Billy at the age of 14. Here's what he said:

Billy Elliot actors
"I started acting and singing when I was 11 when I joined an amateur operatic society not far from where I live.

The dance school I went to was all girls but I didn't care. I seemed to pick it up fairly quickly, and was soon joining in with their shows, plus it was nice being the only boy as I was spoilt by them.

The audition for Billy Elliot was on a Sunday morning. It was pouring with rain and we had to stand outside with hundreds of other people waiting to be seen.

Once inside I had to say my name and another line, in an angry manner! We were then shown a dance routine which we had to copy. Every time they asked me to do something I would think "Just go for it! Try your best".

When I got the call to say I'd got the part our house went mad - everybody was laughing and crying even my Dad. It was fantastic, a dream come true for me. I felt like I just wanted to jump up and down, and run around shouting "I did it!"

We all moved down to London in November for full rehearsals. I am really looking forward to working with all the cast and putting it all together. It will be great fun and I know it will be hard work, as I have to study for my GCSEs as well. But I am looking forward to opening night, it will be WICKED!"

Questions

Billy Elliot actors
1. Who won the award?

2. What award did they win?

3. Name two unusual things about the award.

4. How did James get into acting and singing?

5. What do you think boys in James' school thought about him joining a singing and dancing group?

6. How did James feel about being the only boy?

7. How did he motivate himself to do well during the audition?

8. As well as rehearsing for the stage show, what other important event is he preparing for?

9. What would you think if a boy from your group joined a ballet class?

What do you think these words mean? Write a definition for each.

Stereotype:



Prejudice:



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