Budding young actors and filmmakers were given a taste of stardom at a special red carpet event.
Children at Christ Church CofE Primary School, in North Shields, put together an emotive film capturing the drama of a real life house bombing during the First World War.
They were joined by their families and VIPs at the premiere of their film ‘A Bolt from the Sky’, which tells the story of the Robinson family from Wallsend whose home was hit by a German Zeppelin bomb when Mrs Margaret Robinson was bathing her children.
The pupils, aged seven to 11, worked with North Tyneside Libraries and Bigfoot Arts Education North East for 12 weeks to produce the drama, compose poems and create sounds and music for the film.
They explored how the family must have felt during the attack; the damage caused when the roof was torn off and the aftermath as well as a street party at the end of the war.
The film and drama are part of the Digital War Memorial Project www.digitalwarmemorial.com funded by The National Lottery supported Grants for the arts: Libraries fund through Arts Council England.
At after school clubs the children worked with two drama coaches, a musician and film-maker. They handled documents and objects from the time including news reports, postcards and photographs, which triggered powerful connections with the past, making it feel more immediate and relevant to today.
After all their drama work exploring Margaret Robinson’s story and with the writing and music they had created, the children finally had scenes to act and poems to read for their digital memorial film.
Local filmmaker Scott Coulter used a super-slow motion camera to capture their story in black and white and he also recorded two poems and some narration that for the film which will be shown for the first time at North Shields Customer First Centre on Monday.
Mayor Norma Redfearn said: “I’m immensely proud of our young people and what they have achieved in this touching short film.
“It’s a fantastic use of lottery money and my congratulations to everyone involved in such a moving tribute to World War One.
“It’s clear that as the project evolved the children were not only fascinated by the traumatic events of 100 years ago in Wallsend but they could express their thoughts in such a powerful and creative way.
“I’m thrilled that their creative endeavours are being shown in the Customer First Centre for their families and friends to enjoy and I know they will be touched and moved by such a tribute.”