Schools on Stage

Disco Inferno - Launceston College - June 2009

This school has a dynamic drama teacher who stages amongst the largest school musicals anywhere in the country. Her name is Elizabeth Bennett - and yes she has a sister called Jane Bennett - and a mother who loves a particularly famous English writer. Each year Elizabeth virtually moves into the school to stage an enormous production with a cast of about 100 inside the magnificent 1000 seat Launceston Princess Theatre. It runs for more than week and takes more at the box office than most community theatre companies.

The Wiz - King’s School Production, Remuera, New Zealand

After 12 weeks of lively rehearsals, 50 boys from ages 9 to 13 prepared to take the King’s School community by storm with their extravagant production of The Wiz, with five sell-out performances in July. The Wiz is based on the film version of the popular Broadway musical that retells the events of L. Frank Baum’s classic novel, “The Wonderful Wizard of Oz”.

Eurobeat: Almost Eurovision - Toorak College, Victoria

Toorak College is an independent school in Mt Eliza, Victoria. Each year the school runs several productions including the major College Production (a musical or play) which involves girls from Years 9-12.

Conference of the Birds - Mt Barker Waldorf School, S.A.

Mt Barker is a Waldorf or Rudolf Steiner Independent school in South Australia. The school is K - 12 and has about 320 students. Each Class 12 at Mt Barker, as a gift to their community, prepares and performs a play. After a season of 4 nights the students clean up and then disperse, after a final camp together. The class of 2007 decided to perform their play four times at an amphitheatre in Mt Barker and then a further 11 times in a variety of venues in India.

Les Miserables - King’s High School, Dunedin (New Zealand)

A boys school of 650 students, King’s High School produced Les Miserables with girls from neighbouring Queens High. Les Miserables is a very daunting prospect from the start. How can you do justice to such an international phenomena? An orchestra of eighteen (three adults) was assembled, and seventeen staff signed on in various capacities. Talent oozed out of the woodwork. We opened in our new 350 seat Performing Arts Centre, and four nights later, after four standing ovations (never seen before) from four full houses, we closed.

Leader of the Pack! Underdale High School (S.A.)

Underdale High School’s annual musical production took a different approach this year. Audience members were able to sit either informally at tables or more conventionally in theatre seats. Leader of the Pack, loosely based on the life of singer-songwriter Ellie Greenwich, is filled with wonderful sixties songs, played with amazing energy by the school band. This year the band was a real focus – onstage throughout in their glamorous lamé jackets, providing the accompaniment for the vocalists.

Grease - All Saints’ College - Perth, W.A.

At All Saints’ College we are building a successful tradition of producing quality productions that move away from the traditional performances usually associated with musicals such as Grease.

Seussical: The Musical - Ku-ring-gai Creative Arts High School (N.S.W.)

Ku-ring-gai Creative Arts High School in Sydney’s North prides itself on offering its students the opportunity to showcase their vast performing talents. As the only Creative Arts High School in NSW, the unique curriculum builds and extends students’ skills, knowledge and understanding within the visual and performing art forms. The school has just concluded a smash hit nine-performance season of the adventurous musical Seussical.

Me and My Girl - Perth College Anglican School for Girls (W.A.)

Perth College staff, cast, backstage crew and orchestra members all worked exceptionally hard to create this very successful production which was performed to near full houses for all three performances.

Cruisin' the Musical - Murdoch College - Perth W.A.

After producing Back to The 80s and Disco Inferno with great success, the Murdoch College Drama Company again turned to David Spicer's catalogue for its 2007 whole school production and chose Australia's very own 1950s musical Cruisin' by Rod Christian and Peter Waterman. It's got a large collection of fun songs and the story, revolving around the post-war migrant experience, is one that resonated with our particularly multicultural school.