Performing Arts News
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
Congratulations to the cast, crew and production team of the wonderful Senior School Play, A Midsummer Night’s Dream. It was a beautifully presented piece of theatre that showcased skilled actors in challenging and entertaining roles. The clarity of storytelling was a highlight, made all the more laudable considering the complexity of Shakespeare’s language. Even more impressive is that each performance was student-run, of which they should be extremely proud. Thank you to the staff who contributed to the production, a wonderfully committed and selfless group who share their time, energy and talents to help our students reach their potential.
The Lion King Jr.
Further congratulations must go to the team from Barbreck who staged an exceptional production of Disney’s The Lion King Jr. Under the watchful eye and careful guidance of director Melissa Dods, all Years 5 and 6 students did themselves proud across both performances to adoring audiences. The energy and enthusiasm of the cast was first rate, the product of many months of hard work. I certainly look forward to working with these talented theatrical ‘triple-threats’ when they come up to the Senior School. Well done to the Barbreck staff who took on the challenging production, technical and backstage duties.
Hot on the heels of these productions come the highly anticipated auditions for the Years 7 and 8 Musical Honk! Jr. It is a colourful and lively show based on Hans Christian Andersen’s literary fairy tale The Ugly Duckling.
In preparation for these auditions, plenty of eager Years 7 and 8 students attended our ‘audition workshop’ held during one of the regular Drama Club meetings on a Wednesday lunchtime. VCE Theatre Studies students Caroline Pick (Year 11) and Amber Chapman (Drama Captain, Year 12) gave mock-auditions in front of an audition panel to illustrate to the attentive audience how the audition process works and the etiquette required. The younger girls were very appreciative of the advice-in-action, as it was both beneficial and entertaining. The production team consisting of Mr James Brown, Director; Mr Tim Collins, Music Director; Ms Kathryn White, Choreographer; and Mrs Julia West, Producer; were all on hand after the mock auditions to answer questions and queries about the process. We have set up a Honk! Jr. MyPortal page that contains all the show and audition information, including backing tracks, to help everyone prepare in good time.
The audition process involves preparing selected snippets of three songs from the show, one of the acting sides and attending a group dance call. Thereafter, the production team invite a group of students for a callback audition in order to help us decide upon our final cast list. Rehearsals begin next term and we are looking forward to getting started.
For students not so keen on performing on stage, there are plenty of other opportunities to be involved in the production. The Drama Club will be working on developing costume and makeup designs over the coming weeks. There will be set painting and creation lunchtimes in Term 3, as well as sound and lighting operation and stage management skills to learn and develop during Term 4.
Years 9 and 10
The Semester 2 Years 9 and 10 Drama elective will also be working on auditioning for, creating, developing stagecraft, rehearsing and performing self-devised pieces based on a theme. These performances will take place midway through Term 4.
Top Acts is an evening concert that features a selection of performers from across the Top Class concert series in one stunning event. Dance, Drama, Theatre Studies, Music Solo and Group Performance and original musical works are blended together into a dynamic presentation. Greta Chen (’16) was invited to open the concert on the marimba. Mrs Jenny Mathers and Mr Tim Collins were in the audience to cheer her on and commented that it was one of Greta’s most impressive performances to date.
Each year since 2010, a group of Year 11 theatre-lovers have been selected as MTC Ambassadors, embarking on a year-long extension program that offers insight into the world of professional theatre. Each month they attend an MTC production, meet with artists and staff, and share their experiences of theatre with like-minded peers. This year, Demi Markakis (Year 11) was accepted into the program to represent St Catherine’s School. As part of the process, she will be providing regular updates and show reviews to the School community via our social media pages.