An Island boy has been inspired by Jay Miller’s Circus after being invited to open the final show with his hero – Peppi the Clown.
Freddy Cooke is a 6-year-old from East Cowes who loves dressing up and does so whenever he can.
His mother Nicky Symmonds describes him as a “confident little boy” who loves any event where he can join in.
Last year Freddy asked to dress up as Peppi the Clown. He did, and the family visited Jay Miller’s Circus several times.
He got to know all the performers and was able to go on stage and have pictures taken.
Miss Symmonds said: “It was such a lovely experience. They were so happy that he had put so much effort into dressing up especially. All year he has been looking forward to going again.”
This year, Freddy rocked up to the circus dressed as his idol Peppi once again, to say his goodbyes to his performer friends – only this time bearing gifts in the form of homemade biscuits.
“They all recognized him,” said Miss Symmonds. “They were really excited to see him and took the time to talk to him. He went on stage with Peppi for photos and had an amazing time.”
Then on Friday (August 31), Freddy’s mum received a message from Mitchell Pitch the ringmaster.
He said the team would like to invite Freddy and his mum to their last performances and they would like Freddy to open the show as Mini Peppi with Peppi on stage.
Miss Symmonds reflected: “We were so excited! We arrived on Sunday (September 2) at 1.30pm. Freddy went backstage and chatted to some of the performers and was given some direction from Peppi.
“At 2pm he went on stage with Peppi and he was fantastic! He got lots of claps and cheers. He was so confident. The place was packed and he said he didn’t feel nervous at all. Afterwards we were able to stay and enjoy the final show.
“It was the most incredible experience for Freddy. It’s inspired him to want to be a performer on stage in the future.
“He said he felt like he was The Greatest Showman (from the film). Jay Miller’s are really special. They put on first class shows, but are also very kind and lovely people too.
“To make a little boy’s dreams come true like that. He will never forget it.”
Freddy will return as Mini Peppi.