AT the end of the spring term, Lucton Middle school put on a stunning production of Rudyard Kipling's The Jungle Book, adapted for stage by Stuart Paterson.

The cast of 46 students all aged between 10-13 and a backstage and SFX crew of Year 9 and 10 students, transported their audience to the darkest depths of the Indian jungle.

As ever, the students threw themselves into rehearsals, and even dedicated a weekend to fine tuning their performances.

Exploring this relatively new adaptation has revealed to the children a much darker side to the story than they knew through Disney.

The ferociousness of Shere Kahn's hatred of man, Mowgli's dilemma between remaining with his animal family or joining the jungle people and the themes of preservation and conservation of a species are only a few of the key ideas that were discovered and discussed during the eight weeks of rehearsals.

The students enjoyed discovering camaraderie amongst the pack animals and revelled in learning the choreographed routines and songs.

Some students had a vast amount of lines to learn; special mention should go to Year 7 student, Theo Baba Neal, for the exceptional amount of lines he had to learn - being on stage in almost every scene.

The art, music and costume departments worked alongside the drama department in creating the world of the Indian jungle.

Justice was done to the fabulous writing of Kipling, and the students and parents were thrilled to have been a part of it.