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Romeo puts the boot in

PUBLISHED: 17:52 01 April 2009 | UPDATED: 16:26 25 August 2010

GRITTY: A scene  from Romeo and Juliet.

GRITTY: A scene from Romeo and Juliet.

PLASTIC-wrapped flowers tied to railings, police tape blowing between lampposts and groups of mourning teenagers – these alarmingly familiar images formed the basis of a school production of a 400-year-old love story

PLASTIC-wrapped flowers tied to railings, police tape blowing between lampposts and groups of mourning teenagers - these alarmingly familiar images formed the basis of a school production of a 400-year-old love story

The timing of Kidbrooke School's production of Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet at Greenwich Theatre last week could not have been more poignant.

The knife-crime-themed production opened just weeks after the trial of Karl Bishop, who used two knives to murder Harry Potter actor Rob Knox last May.

The award-winning drama department used poignant snapshots of murder scenes as compelling reminders of London's deadly relationship with youth crime.

Even as the cast of 17 students bowed after their gala night last Thursday, Old Bailey jurors were going to bed ready to find Jake Fahri guilty of murdering Eltham schoolboy Jimmy Mizen the next day.

Director-teacher Lucy Cuthbertson ensured that her teenage cast of 13 to 19-year-olds were not only well rehearsed but also stunningly choreographed.

Tybalt (Liam Callanan) added a whole new street dimension to the Bard's work when he said "fetch me my rapier, boi", while Nurse (Billy Beswick) pulled the most laughs with her infectious giggling.

Meanwhile, Juliet's (Kay Payne) staunchly 'Saaf-London' accent contrasted wildly with Mercutio's (Andrew Montague-Cook) camp and precise enunciation.

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