On Tuesday evening 12 September, the College held our inaugural Showcase of Music and Dance at the Don Bosco Creative Arts Centre at Guilford Young College, a wonderful showcase of performing arts talent from Years 3-10!
One of the outstanding features of the evening was the high student participation with over 100 students performing on stage. In addition there were a number of students involved in backstage management, technical production and front of house, and students also compered the show with great conviction and sense of fun.
For a back stage view I commend Matilda McGovern’s account below.
There was a terrific variety and diversity across the production program which was well structured and aptly named a ‘showcase’. Feedback from the audience has indicated to me that the quality of performances was impressive and the group work strong and disciplined.
A choir is the total sum of every voice, a band, the total sum of every instrumentalist and a dance ensemble, the total sum of every individual movement. The beauty of the performance then is in its collective sound or movement shaped and offered to an audience as a gift through hours of rehearsal. Every musician, singer and dancer is crucial in ensemble work; their collective timing requiring precision and we saw this across the Showcase. Student pride in their work, sense of confidence and connectivity to each other was underpinned by substantial student skill and talent.
In a K-10 school, the College’s senior Creative Arts groups should be our very best and set the standard for our junior students - indeed they are doing this. I would like to commend our senior students who are leading the way.
I would also like to acknowledge the wonderful Miss Katherine Hewitt, Mr Martin Smith and Ms Jenina Evans who devoted so much time and energy to prepare students for their performances.
Together with Mr Mike O’Brien, Director of Creative Arts K-10, they are quality teachers committed to students achieving excellence. They are supported by our superb music tutors – Brett Budgeon, Hans Kooij, John Keenan and Mark Schmalfuss who support, challenge and develop our students one-to-one and in small groups.
As our founder Don Bosco said ‘A house without music is like a body without a soul.’ We all look forward to the next Showcase.
Ms Beth Gilligan, Dominic College Principal
Showcase from backstage - Matilda McGovern, a stage-crew member, kept a diary of the Music and Drama Showcase from her point of view. Here are some of her entries:
We were on the bus just before the end of period 2 and arrived at the GYC Theatre. It’s so big. I was here for ‘Footloose’ two years ago, when my sister Molly was in it. The backstage is huge. Everyone is excited for our full day dress rehearsal.
I am a crew member. We have to work out all the stage changes so the show will run smoothly tonight. There are three other crew members, Lukas, Isaac and James. We started on Act II first. The performers sat in the theatre if they weren’t on stage because they will be backstage tonight and won’t be able to see it.
The atmosphere in the theatre is amazing. It takes an hour and a half to get through to the last song, where everyone, all 110 performers are on stage at the same time, with all the musical equipment, choir rises, chairs and amplifiers, microphones which all have to be plugged in. I don’t how how we will ever be able to do this.
We are outside having lunch. Several GYC students who used to be at Dominic come and talk to us. Time is going so quickly!
There are more difficult set changes in Act 1. The Year 8 Dance number, Supermarket Flowers, ends with thousands of tiny pieces of flowers made from coloured material being thrown up in the air. We have to work out how to get them off the stage and the choirs rises on, in a minute. Ms Evans, Miss Hewitt and Mr O’Brien are working out how to do it. Everyone is so supportive of each other. They are cheering each item as it finishes.
Back on the bus to school. We got through all the show. The lighting is fantastic. It’s such a good feeling knowing everything is ready for tonight.
Everyone is arriving. Dressing rooms are downstairs behind the stage. There’s lots of noise and everyone is doing hair and make-up. Ms Evans, Mrs Baker and several other teachers are helping out. Miss Hewitt has a dress that looks like sheet music. She looks cool. The excitement level is incredible.
The show started at 7pm and it was amazing. It was incredible having the audience. From backstage there were lots of things happening, but on stage, it all went smoothly.
Walking out of the theatre I was so tired, but I was so grateful that I was able to be part of the Showcase. I had so much fun. I can’t wait for the next one.
Matilda McGovern - Year 8 student
You can see more photos on our gallery: Music and Dance Showcase