When a Sudbury school put out a call for clever canines to star in a forthcoming production, it was delighted with the level of response.
So much so that in the search for a pooch to play Toto in Ormiston Sudbury Academy’s musical The Wiz, the school had to hold a series of auditions.
Twelve dog owners put their pets forward and seven were put through their paces.
After careful deliberations, two dogs – Ted, a minature schnauzer, and Lacey, a west Highland terrier – could not be separated and both were selected for the role.
Leo Cox, director of the show, based on The Wizard of Oz, and the school’s head of performing arts, said he was delighted with the chosen duo, but still a little apprehensive.
“Using a real animal in the production is something we have never done before and it fills me with fear,” he said.
“However, Toto is so important to the story he must be played by a real dog. There is just no way around it.”
A 100-strong cast will take part in the production, which will see student Laura Barnard star as Dorothy.
The Wiz will be performed on February 5, 6, and 7.
Ted is owned by Ian and Laura Lloyd, and Lacey by Karen Naylor.