‘The whole thing is just going to be massive’: Aylesbury drummer set to perform in Olympics opening ceremony

Lewis Searle pictured at his business The Music Base in Aylesbury - Lewis is taking part in the Olympic opening ceremony
Lewis Searle pictured at his business The Music Base in Aylesbury - Lewis is taking part in the Olympic opening ceremony

An Aylesbury drummer who landed a part in Friday’s Olympic opening ceremony says director Danny Boyle is a down to earth guy and ‘no one will expect what they are going to see’ at the extravaganza.

Lewis Searle, 27, who teaches percussion skills to 40 pupils a week at his base in Fairford Leys, is one of 1,000 drummers set to feature in Danny Boyle’s Shakespeare-inspired London 2012 extravaganza.

Lewis Searle pictured at his business The Music Base in Aylesbury - Lewis is taking part in the Olympic opening ceremony

Lewis Searle pictured at his business The Music Base in Aylesbury - Lewis is taking part in the Olympic opening ceremony

Mr Searle says although his part sounds similar to Beijing’s opening ceremony, which featured 2,008 drummers, the London show will be ‘completely different’.

“There has been lots to learn and the whole thing is just going to be massive,” he said.

“We will never experience anything like it again. I can’t wait for the next day so I can sit down and watch it back.”

A global TV audience of four billion are expected to watch the £27million ceremony, which begins at 9pm on Friday.

It is set to feature 12,000 performers and will tell the story of a land recovering from its industrial legacy and looking to the future.

The performers, including the drummers, each wear an ear piece so they can hear the director’s instructions.

“Danny Boyle is really down to earth and knows exactly what he wants,” said Mr Searle who often heard Boyle relay praise and encouragement though the performers’ earpiece..

“He and the team would also come round to make sure everyone is happy and having a good time and there is no problems. They don’t keep themselves separate,” he said.

Mr Searle will be on stage during the entire ceremony, except during his brief costume change. He will also parade around the stadium four times behind some of the Olympic teams.

During his multiple auditions he had to demonstrate having natural rhythm and the ability to respond to instructions – before he was even shown what his role entails.

Since May he has been rehearsing twice a week at the Olympic stadium for four hours at a time – which last week increased to four sessions a week that each last eight hours.

The volunteer drummer has even turned down paid work to attend some of the rehearsals.

He has also heaped praise on the Olympic Park, saying: “Everything is immaculate. We are in the East End and where everything is pristine.”