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Ronnie to take West End bow

PUBLISHED: 16:27 08 April 2009 | UPDATED: 11:08 12 August 2010

STAR TURN: Ronnie and mum Rhonda.

STAR TURN: Ronnie and mum Rhonda.

A YOUNGSTER will leave audiences hungry for more after winning a part in West End show Oliver alongside Mr Bean actor Rowan Atkinson.

A YOUNGSTER will leave audiences hungry for more after winning a part in West End show Oliver alongside Mr Bean actor Rowan Atkinson.

Ten-year-old Ronnie Rutherford of Mottingham Road, Bromley, is playing Spider in the sell out show at the Theatre Royal Drury Lane.

His mother Rhonda Rutherford, 35, said: "We are really pleased, it is quite overwhelming. Up until now Ronnie has always said that the drama was just a hobby and that he wanted to be a chef but now he says he wants to be an actor for real. I know he's my son but he is brilliant. It has been intense, the rehearsals lasted for six weeks and now he does five shows per week. He loves it."

The Redhill Primary School pupil has four other siblings who also attend drama classes but his mother says there is no rivalry.

She said: "They all support each other. Some people think it's a bit weird how in to it they all are but I'd rather that than have them hanging around on the streets. I only took them along for something for them to do, I never thought they would all be doing it years later. If we go to an audition, they see it as a day out. They think it's brilliant that Ronnie got a part."

His teacher at All the Arts drama school in Chislehurst, Lucy Morgan, said: "I have taught Ronnie for four years. I'm absolutely over the moon.

"We sent him along to the audition just for experience and we were amazed when he won a part in Fagan's gang playing opposite Rowan Atkinson.

"Being a professional actress myself I know just how tough this industry is and for Ronnie to get an opportunity like this is fantastic.

"It has given everyone in his drama class a real boost and now they all want to be in a West End show like him. He is just perfect for the role. He is such a natural."

katherine.nelson@archant.co.uk

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