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  • Writer's pictureThe Lowestoft Players

Elf the Musical – introducing Buddy

When many of us are enjoying a well-earned and relaxing summer break, members of the Lowestoft Players are busy rehearsing for their next full scale production – Elf the Musical – so for them Christmas is already in full swing!


“Thinking about Christmas in August is slightly bonkers”, exclaimed Ric Gardner-Collis who plays the leading role of Buddy, a young orphan child who mistakenly crawls into Santa’s bag of gifts and is transported back to the North Pole. Unaware that he is actually human, Buddy’s enormous size and poor toy-making abilities cause him to face the truth.

Ric Gardner-Collis, wearing a hat and looking a little cheeky whilst participating in a singing rehearsal for Elf The Musical with the Lowestoft Players.

Ric will play the leading role of Buddy.

Credit Emma Cullen


We asked Ric how he’s finding getting in the mood for Christmas in August?


“I’m really loving it! Elves are happy all the time and it’s so nice to escape into a character which is so much great fun,” he replied. “Although I do wish I was a little fitter as playing Buddy is very physical. The hardest part is learning so many lines and speaking with an American accent.”


Although Ric has performed on stage many times previously, this is the first part he’s played with such an accent. He uses repetition to learn his lines and a vocal coach App on his mobile phone to perfect the pronunciation.


Originally from Beccles, Ric, 36, performed with the Lowestoft Players as a junior. This will be his first leading role with the popular group for 18 years.


Ric has a degree and a masters in Drama and has worked in the industry managing theatres in the UK for some time. At the age of 29 Ric decided to re-train as a hairdresser. He opened his own salon in Norwich last month – The Ethical Hairdresser in the Royal Arcade. He lives in Norwich with his husband of seven years, Alex.


Are having hairdressing skills in the world of theatre useful, we asked?


“Absolutely” Ric responded. I played a Troubadour in The Player’s production of The Hunchback of Notre Dame in May. Some of us Troubadours wore wigs, a few were a little wild when we received them, but I was able to tame them into shape with my scissors!”


Elf will be performed at the Players Theatre, Lowestoft from Friday 29th to Sunday 1st October and Friday 6th October to Sunday 8th October 2023.

Poster design Stephen Wilson


Tickets are available from www.playerstheatre.info or by contacting the Box Office on 01502 770020.


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