The School Plays
The annual school play is one of the most important events at our school. The last 3 weeks of the summer term are devoted to putting on a high standard production. We try to involve as many of the students in the upper school as possible.
The students collaborate in all aspects of the play's production. They assist in staging, lighting, sound, painting sets and of course acting. The comprehensive, educational value of this whole process cannot be underestimated. In terms of an holistic learning experience that helps all involved develop personally, socially and academically we believe that little can match this priceless annual event.
Here are some videos and photos from some of our previous classic Small School productions.
In 2018 we put on our second Shakespeare play, Macbeth. With a largely punk rock soundtrack that opens with Anarchy in the UK and included tracks by The Doors, The Rolling Stones, Jimi Hendrix, Siouxsie & The Banshees, Rancid, The Stooges, Radiohead, The Libertines, The Strokes etc... the students produced perhaps one of our best ever plays. Unfortunately, due to copyright notices, we had to remove most of the music from the YouTube version. However there is still much to see, including filmed sequences and powerhouse performances from the two leads.
A comic, satirical re-imagining of the classic fairy tale, with a psychotic Queen, a talking mirror / iPad called Siri, a feisty Snow White, and seven dwarfs - but not all the Disney ones. Actually we only had five dwarfs - Bossy, Grumpy, Happy, Numpty and Brainy. The other two are not strictly dwarfs - Lanky, too tall to be a dwarf, and Trumpy, who of course is a troll. Once again brilliant performances from all, as you can see.
An Inspector Calls
This brilliant ensemble piece by J.B. Priestley is part of the English Literature GCSE syllabus. And if you want to study a play, you cannot beat being in a live production. A cast of 13 and 14 year olds put together an almost note perfect performance, as you can see for yourself.
A Midsummer Night's Dream
What better way to celebrate the conversion of the old stables into our very own theatre / studio, than with a comic masterpiece from the Bard himself. This was very much a whole school production with almost everyone involved. The set design was truly magical and the performances were quite stunning. And now you can watch it here!
The following year saw a return to comedy with our version of the Firebird, where we combined numerous different versions and added our own twisted satirical interpretation. The play featured a dual personality Baba Yaga, played by two different actors, a philandering King who gets his comeuppance, and the world's stupidest knight accompanied by his talking horse. Watch it here and it will all make perfect sense.
The Birthday Party
In 2011 the secondary class put on a stunning production of Harold Pinter’s ‘The Birthday Party’ to a select audience in the intimate surroundings of the dilapidated Lyndhurst football clubhouse, which we were temporarily using as a secondary class at the time. Some of the pupils were performing as part of their English Language GCSE – they all scored A* grades. This production is available on our YouTube channel. It really is worth a least a glance if only to see a 15 year old girl superbly playing the 50 year old alpha male, Goldberg, or Aidan's brilliant Irishman, McCann and George's outstanding performance as poor old Stanley.
To celebrate the move into our new school we put on a whole school production of Animal Farm in 2012, predominantly starring Upper Primary and Lower Secondary Classes. ‘Stunning!’ ‘Amazing performances!’ ‘Best play I’ve seen for ages!’ were some of the comments. Some parents even came to see it twice! Here are some of the animals emerging from make up...
Rumplestiltskin & The Three Little Pigs
In 2006 the Primary Class performed two plays that they helped to write and adapt from two classic fairy tales, Rumpelstiltskin and The Three Little Pigs. Using images projected on a screen for the first time, we satirised commercials with a salesman selling the finest quality bricks lovingly made in the mountains of Holland and delicately fired with balsamic vinegar in the volcanic pits of Mars. Here are two of the actors getting in role backstage.
The Wizard of Odd
In 2008 the school put on its most ambitious production so far – in fact too ambitious for our old, humble school building – The Wizard of Odd, a modern adaptation of the classic tale The Wizard of Oz, set in Grimsby rather than Kansas. Performed at the Vernon Theatre in Lyndhurst, the Wizard of Odd involved a cast of thousands (well about 30 children aged from 2 to 14 – it felt like a cast of thousands!) a music score; songs (just the one); dancing (very silly dancing to Bartok’s Music for Strings, Percussion and Celeste!); clips from movies and TV; plus filmed dream sequences and a filmed spoof on Big Brother called ‘Pull the Chain’…. the show where you get to flush contestants and their self-esteem down the loo! And yes that is a toilet brush doubling up as a microphone...
Our first ever production was Pinocchio in the Summer of 2004. Performed mostly by 7 to 9 year olds with some highly impressive performances the play was staged in the old scout hall in Lyndhurst, our original home. All of the actors have moved onto to college and university now. Here are two of them as the Blue Fairy and Pinocchio himself preparing for the production with doting little sister in attendance.