Danny Boyle recruits Tower Hamlets school pupils for 2012 London Olympics in Stratford

Oscar winning Slumdog director Danny Boyle will not be looking to seasoned Hollywood stars for his Olympics opening extravaganza but among Tower Hamlets’ school children.

Organisers announced last Friday that the under 16s volunteer performers for the Olympic and Paralympic ceremonies will be selected from schools in the six Olympic host boroughs, including four schools in Tower Hamlets.

Ceremony organisers also revealed that a 27 tonne bell, set to be the biggest ringing bell in Europe, has been commissioned from the Whitechapel Bell Foundry to kick off proceedings.

Artistic Director of the opening ceremony, Danny Boyle, said: “We’ve called the show ‘Isles of Wonder’, inspired by Shakespeare’s The Tempest.

“Our Isles of Wonder salutes and celebrates the exuberant creativity of the British genius in a ceremony we hope will be as unpredictable and inventive as the British people.”

The opening ceremony will also feature 12,956 props and a flying system capable of lifting 25 tonnes, and will be staged across 15,000 square metres.

Langdon Park School in Byron Street, Poplar, was the only secondary school in Tower Hamlets to take part in auditions.

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The primary schools are Marner in Devas Street, Bow, Manorfield in Wyvis Street, Bromley-by-Bow and Marian Richardson in Senrab Street, Stepney.

Head of Langdon School, Chris Dunne, said they had no idea pupils would be given a chance to take part in dance auditions when they signed up for Get Set, the official London 2012 education programme, incorporating the Games values in their curriculum.

Applications are open until 22 February for adult volunteer performers to audition to participate in the Opening and Closing Ceremonies of the London 2012 Paralympic Games. LOCOG are searching for 5,000 volunteer performers to fill roles as dancers, actors, percussionists and general all-round performers. People can find more information and register their interest for this opportunity by completing the online application form at www.london2012.com/ceremoniescasting.