2020 has been a weird and wonderful year that has presented many challenges for the performing arts.
Sadly, many of our events such as the Sheila Winn Shakespeare Festival, Showquest, and the One-Act Play Festival were unable to go ahead due to Covid-19. Our focus this year has been to support our students in achieving the results they need to continue on their learning journey. There have been many people over the last year who have helped us in this pursuit.
Many thanks to Vicki Morris-Williamson, Richard Wiltshire and the Aurora Centre tech crew for their backstage support. We also appreciated the contribution of Angela Holmes and Rachel Heta for their ongoing support of the department.
Thank you to former Burnside student, Adam Hodgson, for his fabulous photography of our events this year.
Thanks also to the Burnside staff that have worked so hard: Kate Olliver, Chantal Koning, Vanessa Sandes, and Charlotte Ensor.
Lord of the Flies
Even though it has been a strange year, the Year 13 Drama Class was able to present a fantastic performance of Lord of the Flies (William Golding's adaptation of the novel by Nigel Williams) in August. This performance was originally slated for the end of term 1, so we were incredibly impressed that their dedication carried through lockdown with their enthusiasm never wavering. This production demonstrated to us how talented our Year 13 students are. Special mention needs to be given to James-Paul Mountstevens, Elizabeth Ellison, and Noah James for directing their classmates, overseen by the watchful eye of their teacher, Kate Olliver. Thank you also to Franki Tellick for her design of the eye-catching poster.
Once again Drama Club has proven to be a saving grace for us all and a place for us to have fun and be ourselves. The play was directed by students Amy McMillan, Alyssa Tweedy, Honor Cloake, Lily Reed, and Amira Jain. The directors and performers did an amazing job and should be proud of what they created.
This year we took on the challenge of not only performing a musical but performing in the Aurora Centre, a massive change from our smaller-scale M3 performances. At the first performance there was an audience of over 200 primary school students from Westburn and Christ the King schools, brought by their teachers for an afternoon of music and fun. At the evening performance the audience was made up of families and friends, including several younger members who got to enjoy the action up close. This meant that our audience numbers increased from around 60 last year, to almost 500 this year.
On top of this performance the junior performers also took a shortened version to Rabbit Patch Pre-School. Not only was this fun for our students, it was a real educational experience, exposing them to a different type of audience and performance style. All going well, we will definitely be going back to Rabbit Patch next year.
Many thanks to Alyssa Tweedy and Amy McMillan for their time as Heads of the Drama Club. Congratulations to Honor Cloake and Lily Reed for becoming the Heads for 2021.
This year we competed in both the Senior and Junior Theatresport competitions hosted by The Court Theatre. Both were thoroughly enjoyable events for competitors and spectators. This year the team was led by Katerina Papageorgiou and her helpers, Julia Johnson and Meg Doughty. One of the four Senior Teams qualified for the Finals. This competition was of very high quality and all four final teams were incredibly talented. One of the teams was a 'scratch' team that was created that morning of students from different schools who had competed in the Heats two weekends ago and were asked to return as a 'wild card'. Our very own Frankie Tellick from Year 13 and Dev Pandya from Year 11 were two of those students. They attended a 2-hour workshop. In the end Frankie was selected to be a member of the scratch team which won the entire competition for the first time! Congratulations to Frankie and a huge well done to all the Burnside students who made it this far!
The Junior team, although they did an outstanding job, did not qualify for the finals. One team had the lead in Heat 2 until they lost by half a point! For the majority, this was their first time competing and they managed to deliver scenes of high quality.
The biggest thank you must go to all of the Drama students for their hard work and dedication to drama in this difficult time. Best of luck to all of the graduating year 13 students. We look forward to seeing your contributions to the Performing Arts in the Future.
Major Drama Award Winners 2020
Outstanding Contribution to the Performing Arts Cup - James-Paul Mountstevens
The Jill Cutler Cup for Senior Drama - Livvy Keehan and Charis Naylor
The 1976 School Council Cup for Contribution to Drama - Kieran King
The Drama Class of '93 Cup for Greatest Effort in Drama - Elizabeth Ellison
The Swadi Trophy for Leadership in Drama - James-Paul Mountstevens