Ballymoney’s Stevie takes on role of Sikes in Oliver!

Ballymoney man Stevie Black who is playing Bill Sykes in Oliver
Ballymoney man Stevie Black who is playing Bill Sykes in Oliver

The story of the boy who asked for more - Oliver! - comes to the Riverside Theatre this Friday with a Ballymoney man playing one of the lead roles.

Stevie Black plays the role of baddie Bill Sikes in Portrush Music Society’s production of Lionel Bart’s Oliver! which runs in the Coleraine Theatre from Friday, May 6th until Saturday, May 14th.

This is Stevie’s highest profile role yet having joined the award-winning Society just two years ago.

Since joining the Society, Stevie has played supporting roles in both Evita and The Addams Family Musical.

But Bill Sikes is the most challenging one yet - and it’s one which the Ballymoney man is relishing.

The former Ballymoney Rugby Club player said: “I’m really looking forward to bringing the character to life and putting my own mark on it!

“I’ve had quite a bit of singing experience over the last few years but bringing the acting alongside it has been an amazing experience.”

Playing the central role of Oliver is 12-year-old James McDowell from Portstewart.

James is no stranger to lead roles with PMS having played Puggsley Addams in the Hallowe’en production of The Addams Family Musical. He is joined on stage by fellow Portstewart teenager Seamus Donaghy who plays the Artful Dodger.

Taking on the iconic role of Fagin is Alan Morton who first joined PMS last year to play Mal Beineke in The Addams Family Musical.

The role of Nancy will be played by local teacher Rosemary O’Connor with Helen Wilkinson as Widow Corney and David McDowell, joining son James on stage, as Mr Bumble the beadle.

In fact, Oliver! is quite a family affair for the McDowells with husband and wife team David and Frances Mary (chorus) appearing in the cast with their two children James (Oliver!) and Anna (chorus) and grandfather John is part of the production team working as assistant director to show director Kerry Kane.

Tickets are selling fast with the opening night and first matinee almost sold out so get in touch with the Riverside Theatre 028 70 123 123 or