Kings Youth Theatre asks: Who are you calling a loser?Â

The year is 1971 and Michael Dork may be a computer geek but he's invented something that could changed the world.

Wednesday, 18th July 2018, 12:22 pm
Updated Wednesday, 18th July 2018, 12:28 pm
Kings Youth Theatre in rehearsal for Loserville at The Kings, Southsea, from July 21-24. Imogen Thomas, centre. Picture by Anne Dobeson

He's also discovered girls: a prospect (almost) as exciting as his love of binary. Holly is the girl: she has looks and brains and wants to be the first woman in space. But will she want Michael?

This is Loserville, a musical based on Welcome to Loserville, an album by the pop-rock band, Son of Dork featuring Busted's James Bourne.

Kings Youth Theatre is kicking off the summer holidays with its production of the 2009 musical.

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Matt Dingley, 15, plays the lead role of Michael Dork.

The Miltoncross Academy student has been with the company for two years, and this is his first musical lead.

'˜It has been a challenge don't get me wrong,' says Matt, '˜but after all of the rehearsals I'm finding it more comfortable.'

How has he found it embracing his inner geek? '˜It started off being difficult because it's not me at all, but with rehearsal and practice it's affected my real life.

'˜It's made me see other people's views, and what it's like for other people. I've developed a lot of confidence through being at the youth theatre.

And what about the 1970s? A time long before the show's cast was born.

'˜It is strange. We have grown up with technology that is very much advanced, but then we have to look back when we go on stage.'

Matt's co-star is Imogen Thomas, who plays Holly Manson.

Imogen, 15, is one of the KYT's longest serving members '“ she joined when she was just nine.

'˜I started mainly through school, I did acouple of plays at my junior school and I loved performing so I started looking for something else I could do and found KYT.'

While she's loving Loserville, her favouriteproduction takes her back to her debut. '˜My favourite was my first one, which was Oliver. It was a real thrill being on the Kings Theatre stage for the first time, and it's a great show as well. I didn't have a named part, I was just in the chorus but it was just so much fun to be involved in.'

Imogen has found getting to know her character of Holly enjoyable too. '˜It's been brilliant, I love Holly, she's such an interesting and confident character, she's great fun to play. And it's not been too difficult because I am a bit of a geek,' she laughs.

And the chemistry between the two hasn't been a problem either.

Even before the show started we were really good friends, so there's been no awkwardness.

'˜It's all been fine!


The Kings Theatre, Southsea

July 20-21