What an amazing end to the year we have had in the Performing Arts Faculty. We have had a huge end of the year Gigs on the Green season - complete with Flash Brass performances, Intermediate Stage Band, Junior Stage Band, Ovenden Band, Choir, Keenan Strings, Chamber Strings, Karen took the Kids and Years 8 and 9 music students. It has been terrific to have SO much music playing throughout the school. Congratulations to all students and staff who have been involved in this series.
The Junior Concert was held in two distinct stages on Thursday 2 December - Period 5 for the Year 7s, and Period 6 for the Year 8s. The students performed brilliantly. This concert will be released very soon - and we thank the amazing AV team, led by Mr Nick Xanthoudakis, for making this happen.
We are now in the midst of rehearsal for the musical Chicago and the students have demonstrated their extraordinary resilience to step back into character, revise songs and choreography. We look forward to presenting this to the wider school community on Thursday 9 – Saturday 11 December.
We thank in advance the Senior Stage Band, directed by Mr Dmitry Serebrianik, who will be performing at the 2021 Presentation ceremony on Tuesday 14 December. Their work has been exceptional all year and we are so pleased that they will undoubtedly perform beautifully to help close off the 2021 academic year.
Instruments are now being audited, cleaned and repaired and if students are wanting to borrow these over the holidays, they should contact their instrumental teacher to arrange pick up after Tuesday 14 December.
The Flash Brass series will continued, with the Year 7 Brass Ensemble to make their debut performance on the A01 stage on Wednesday 10 November. On Monday 22 November it was the turn of Honkers Inc, an honours ensemble of advanced players in the junior years, who played at the end of the day and sent their peers home humming Christmas music.
Senior honours ensemble Wonderbrass entertained the school community at lunchtime on Tuesday 23 November, again from the A01 stage.
Outdoor band performances closed in November in style, with the Junior Stage Band giving a breakfast show in the Oasis on Monday 29 November, followed by the Intermediate Stage Band at lunchtime on the A01 stage. The Symphonic Wind ensemble performed on the A01 stage at lunchtime on Tuesday 30 November. String and vocal students appeared in the same bat-time and place on Thursday 2 December, with the Chamber Strings, Keenan Strings, String quartet and Senior Singers combining for a concert with lots of Christmas cheer!
This five week festival of outdoor performance concluded on Friday 3 November with a lunchtime performance by the Ovenden Band. This has involved 11 presentations involving 15 different student groups, whose music has been greatly enjoyed by the school community.
Head of Performing Arts
ROUNDING OFF 2021 WITH THE SENIOR ENSEMBLES
On Monday 29 November, members of the Symphonic Wind enjoyed a rehearsal with High Tea to celebrate the year’s efforts and the contribution of Year 12 members. It was great to have this chance to reconnect after exams and remote learning.
The Orchestra held an unexpectedly dramatic Break-Up party in the Hall on Thursday 2 December. With guest musicians including staff members and some of last year’s Year 12s, the orchestra rehearsed and recorded Vaughan Williams’s English Folk Song Suite and Here Be Dragons by Gary Gackstatter. After a very warm start to the afternoon, the orchestra’s rendition of the folk song ‘Cloudy Banks’ brought on the first drops of rain. Thereupon we discovered Mr Morrissey’s power to invoke thunder and lightning with his magic clarinet in the opening bars of Here Be Dragons, and a very dramatic performance ensued, to the accompaniment of severe storm activity! An unforgettable musical experience. Afterwards, the opportunity to chat, eat pizza and relax was welcome after a busy day of performing.
We have been so lucky to have the opportunity to get back together to enjoy making ensemble music at the end of this stressful year, and to share it with fellow staff and students. Many thanks to Mr Serebrianik for his support in running Symphonic Wind, and Ms Bugeja for her assistance with the Orchestra. Thanks also to the many other instrumental music teachers who have helped their students to become accomplished members of these ensembles over the years, and the rest of the school community for their support. Without them, our community would lack the human connection and spiritual enrichment that only making music can provide.
Ms Tracy Videon
YEAR 11 THEATRE STUDIES RADIO PLAY
This semester in Year 11 Theatre Studies the students worked with professional sound designer Darius Kedros (Melbourne Theatre Company) to analyse and interpret a short play for a radio interpretation.
Students worked as actors, directors and designers in this process.
You can read more about the process and see examples of student designs here. Please note you will need your child to log on for you, as this website is within the MCK domain.
You can listen to the full play on the page above, or via this link, I highly recommend reading the short explanation below before you listen as it is quite an abstract play!
About the play
The Cave, by Tim Kelly, is a one-act play that was written as something of an experiment; if the performers onstage fully commit to the creation of a reality, what will the audience believe?
This play gave the students the opportunity to explore some more challenging and abstract styles of modern theatre, including Artaud's Theatre of Cruelty. They worked as a production team to set aims for the experience they wanted the audience to have. One of these aims was inspired by Theatre of the Absurd; to suggest that there is no 'correct' meaning to this play, and to invite the audience to create and/or question their own meanings as they listen. For this reason, this short radio play is worth listening to more than once!
Obviously, a radio play relies completely on the use of vocal skills to convey character. However, the class experimented with how use of movement and gesture in turn impacted or enhanced their ability to manipulate their voices to play their role.
Students also took on design roles, creating detailed concepts and renders for the imagined set, props, costumes and make up that this show would have implemented had we been able to stage it. This was valuable practice for their upcoming full production in Year 12! You can see some of their documented creative development on the webpage link above.
Ms Lucy Angell