Britannia High axed over poor ratings

Musical drama Britannia High has been axed after just one series.

The ITV1 show, created by Strictly Come Dancing judge Arlene Phillips, has been cancelled due to poor ratings, according to reports in The Sun.

Channel bosses had hoped that the eight-part series, centred on a group of teens at a drama school, could be as big as Disney’s High School Musical with its attractive cast – including Skins hunk Mitch Hewer – and songs penned by Take That songwriter Gary Barlow.

Actor Mark Benton played school principal Mr Nugent, while Adam Garcia played dance teacher Stefan.

The rest of the cast were made up of unknowns that Arlene had discovered through nationwide auditions and BBC show Dance X.

There were plans to release a single to accompany the series, and Arlene was keen to create an arena tour to further showcase the talent of the show’s main stars.

She said of the cast: “I’m not letting this lot get away – they’re mine!

“I’d like to do a live tour with them and demonstrate what they can do. There are no tricks in their performances anywhere.”

An ITV insider said: “We thought Britannia High would be an all-singing, all-dancing success — especially having the top names in dance and music on board.

“Sadly the stories of these youngsters vying for their dreams didn’t seem to capture viewers’ imagination.

“The credit crunch is affecting everything, not least TV. A second series of Britannia High was just not viable.”

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