THORNHILL School is backing its star pupil as he battles to be crowned Superstar.
Ex-pupil Ben Forster has already beaten off a ton of other Jesus wannabes competing to be the title role in Andrew Lloyd Weber’s Jesus Christ Superstar in the ITV1 show.
The school has started a campaign of posters and announcements to get everyone voting for their most famous ex-pupil, who last night made it through to tonight’s semi-final.
Patrice Baron works in the Special Needs department of the school and worked alongside Ben on the school shows, doing the children’s make-up.
She said pupils have been buzzing with Ben’s success and everyone is behind the Millfield lad.
“We’ve just really took it on. The kids think it’s great to see one of their own doing so well.”
Patrice, 52, of Fulwell, said Ben was a model pupil at school.
“He was just one of those pupils that you loved to have in your class,” she said.
“He worked hard, he got on and had a brilliant personality. He has a lovely family who are so supportive.
“From the first school show he was in he stood out. You could see the star quality already.”
Ben performed in a series of school shows as a pupil, taking the lead roles in Little Shop of Horrors and Grease.
Patrice partially credits the school’s music and drama teachers, who spotted a raw talent in Ben and helped it grow.
“Jacqui Bennett saw a talent in Ben and worked on it.
“Her and Julie Elphenstone are a real inspiration, they can spot talent and nurture it.
“We have Gary Watson and Michael Pickering as well who have both gone on to do brilliantly,” she added.
Patrice said that as Ben’s profile started to rise, he still kept his feet on the ground.
“There was no airs or edges, he came back and performed at the school as well.”
With the standard high and a tough team of judges, Patrice is convinced that Ben can go all the way.
“He’s got the looks as well as the talent and on top of that he’s got a really good work ethic. Every night he seems to get better and better, we’ve watched him grow and grow into the star he is today.
“We want the whole city to get behind Ben and give him the support he deserves,” added Patrice.