Trio of Performances from our Year 8s | King's Hall School Taunton

Trio of Performances from our Year 8s

RT @kingshallsport: Cross country/ outdoor pursuit/ treasure hunt/ orienteering… whatever it is called, the pupils had a brilliant time… https://t.co/PDUAPqm9I9 - 13 hours ago

At this time of year our senior pupils take the stage in their Year 8 production – a full, large-scale musical with lots of acting, singing and dancing. However, for obvious reasons, this year, we needed to take a slightly different approach.

And so, Mrs Keirle set about devising a plan that saw three different straight plays coming together to deliver serious messages for a more grown up audience: peer pressure, bullying, family relationships, self- worth, and social responsibility were explored by our pupils.

In 'Twisted' Gretel is a fairly average teen. She falls out with her dad and has issues with her boyfriend. But in one-way Gretel is different – she is in a coma. How did she get there? In this tale full of twists and turs there is more than one suspect.The play begins with Gretel in a coma. The central question throughout is - what actually happened? In the course of finding an answer the story unfolds in a series of flashbacks, reactions and speculation. This allows for the children to carry out ensemble work, choral speaking, monologues and other drama conventions. Throughout the whole play the audience will think they have worked out the answer to the central question but then finally at the end discover the truth and it is not what they think!

'The Terrible Fate of Humpty Dumpty' was performed by our second Year 8 bubble. The play tackled the thought-provoking play by David Calcutt. Every child in 8K played an important role to tell the story through action and words. The play was also brought to life by members of the Year 8 technical team, who designed the lights and sound. Simple costume and props added to the whole production.

Victimised by the cruel, cunning Stubbs, Terry Dumpton, nicknamed Humpty Dumpty, resorts to truancy to avoid his bullies. Following pressure from his tormentors to prove he isn't a coward, Terry takes part in a dangerous activity resulting in a fatal outcome. He gets killed by climbing an electrical pylon and becomes the victim of the deadly gang at his new school, hounded to the very end. Fear, pity, guilt and deceit divide the bullies, giving rise to discussions on moral issues, prejudices and the roles of the community and media.

This tragic play gave an insight into not only bullying, but human nature itself and how we so often fail to recognise a dangerous situation until it is too late.

Through their acting, 8K succeeded in making the audience understand that we all share some responsibility for what happens to others and there lies the potential for the growth of mind, the heart and the spirit. In that potential there is hope.

In the final of the three plays, 'Who Me? Yes You!' provided a light-hearted fun look at social responsibilities – a theatre in education type of play where the audience can learn. Hopefully the whole school can watch this one and think about bullying, celebrating differences, respect for the environment and many other issues.

This ‘Theatre in Education’ play – designed to teach younger audiences a message all about Social Responsibility – did so in a light hearted humorous way. The Year 8 audience and the Year 6 audience were highly entertained, and many of the teachers were in hysterics. However important lessons were still addressed: bullying, recycling, sharing, accepting differences and so much more.

8H had a super time performing and took on many different characters throughout the performance, from Viking Girl to Darth Vader and even a glamourous Mum driving her car!

In particular, they should be congratulated for working with technology as the production was run with added film clips of Auggie, who had to isolate, and Patrick and Eddie, live from Singapore, as well as several absences. As always Year 8 showed they could cope in a crisis and support each other, so we say a huge well done to the two pupils who jumped at the chance to perform and helped ensure the show continued.

The cast and director Mrs Keirle would like to thank Mr Eyers for ensuring that the show was a success – they could not have done it without his technical expertise!

Well done Year 8. These three successful plays helped to ensure that drama continues at King’s Hall even in these current times.


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