AFTER being thwarted by snow in its initial performance week, staff and students came together to stage The Little Mermaid at the Hermitage Academy, Chester-le-Street earlier this month.

The cast was made up of more than 45 students from years seven to 13 who performed six shows over three days.

Pupils from Ouston, Red Rose, Newker, Bullion Lane and Cestria primary schools brought pupils to watch matinee performances on the Thursday and Friday afternoons.

Year ten Caitlin Larkin made her debut performance as Ariel, while year 13 Courtney Crawley was wickedly menacing as Ursula in her final Hermitage show.

Morven Adey, leader and manager of drama and dance at the Hermitage, said: "The art department worked amazingly on make up, costumes and set to bring the whole look of the show together.

"When it comes to performing arts, we believe wholeheartedly that being involved in school productions is such a beneficial and enriching part of a student’s educational experience.

"It’s important for us at Hermitage that our students feel free to explore their creativity, learn to work collaboratively with others from every year in the school, develop their confidence and communication skills, learn the importance of commitment, whilst at the same time understanding that hard work can also be fun.

"We are really proud of all the students that have been involved, including those on stage and those who helped behind the scenes.

"We hope everyone stays involved in the enrichment opportunities at Hermitage, and that even more students get involved next time."