Back to school for former pupil turned stage star

A former Highfields pupil who has gone on to enjoy a successful stage and screen career is hoping to impress students in his latest production - before coming back to school for a motivational Q&A session.

Aaron Virdee will be appearing as Uncle Amman and Mr Bhatra in Birmingham Repertory Theatre’s version of Black Country-based comedy drama Anita And Me, which will be touring to Wolverhampton Grand Theatre next month.

Around 50 Year 9 students will be going along to the show on February 16. They will then get chance to meet the actor - who appeared in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 - to learn more about succeeding as a performer when he visits school for a Q&A session the next day.

          Image courtesy of Wolverhampton Grand Theatre

          Image courtesy of Wolverhampton Grand Theatre

The stage show - starring Coronation Street and Dinnerladies star Shobna Gulati - is based on the debut novel of the same name by Wolverhampton-born comedian, playwright and actress Meera Syal CBE. 

It is a poignant coming-of-age tale following the story of young girl growing up in the only Punjabi family in a fictional Black Country mining village in the 1970s. It was adapted into a film in 2002.

Sharon Bishop, Head of Performance, said: “Aaron showed great potential as a GCSE drama student and it is wonderful that he has gone on to enjoy such a successful career, appearing in a number of professional theatre productions.

“Our students are looking forward to seeing him on stage before getting the chance to meet him and ask questions about his life as a performer.

“We are always delighted to welcome professional performers into school to speak to students as their insight, experience and knowledge is invaluable to those who wish to pursue a career in performing arts.

“This visit is extra special because Aaron is a former Highfields pupil. It was not too long ago that he was sat where they are now, as a student hoping to one day become a professional performer, and he is now living his dream." 

After leaving Highfields in 2002, Aaron trained in acting at the Birmingham Theatre School and Postgraduate Acting for Screen at Redroofs Theatre School. He has performed in a number of professional theatre productions, including The Wiz, Changing Faces and Ganging Up whilst his TV credits include BBC show Citizen Khan. 

Anita And Me will be at Wolverhampton's Grand Theatre from February 14-18.

 

 

 

 

Posted on January 19, 2017 .