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Boys who dance the role of Billy Elliot often have experiences similar to his

By Peter Robb,
Ottawa Citizen
December 22, 2012

Drew Minard, Billy Elliot the Musical 2012Perhaps no major theatrical enterprise around today depends so much on the strong legs of a 12-year-old boy as does Billy Elliot The Musical. Billy is on stage for the duration of the show. He must look like an 11- to 12-year-old, be no taller than four foot 10 inches and be able to dance and sing and speak.

The original director of the musical compared the role to playing Hamlet while running a marathon.

Being Billy is not for the faint-of-heart. The demands of the role mean that there are always four Billys on hand for the touring production to draw upon.

One of the Billys who will perform in Ottawa when the run begins here New Years Day is 12-year-old Drew Minard of Des Moines, Iowa.

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