Theatrical production is a collaborative, creative form of fine art. It is simultaneously individuality and collectivity working in unison. Theatrical art demands the collaboration of the actors with one another, with a director, with the various technical support people upon whom they depend for scenery and lighting, and with people who advertise and sell the show. In addition, the theatre depends more than most art forms upon audience response.
Our Year 11 production of The Peach Season, by the contemporary Australian playwright Debra Oswald, was a fine example of the team effort that is at the heart of theatre. The cast and crew worked tirelessly to bring the words on the page to life. They created a memorable cautionary tale, leading the audience through a range of authentic human emotions to arrive at a place of redemption for their characters.
The cast and crew experienced the electricity that is live performance. It is the presence of the audience that creates the final ingredient to make the performance live. Everything that has been learnt must be brought into the now – into ‘the moment’ for the audience.
I am very grateful to the many people who contributed their time and energy to the show and particularly to our audiences who braved the challenging weather to come and complete the circle.
Sometimes all you can do is sit back and watch people make mistakes... The instant a person loves a person or a thing, they face the risk of losing that person or thing.
The Shearwater Year 11 Drama class of 2019 invites you to come and see their production of Debra Oswald's The Peach Season. Winner of the 2005 Rodney Seaborn Playwright's Award, The Peach Season is a powerful and moving story of desire, and the painful process of a mother's letting go.
After fleeing Sydney following the loss of her husband, Celia has spent 16 years on an isolated peach farm, hiding from the horrors of the world, in an effort to keep her daughter Zoe safe. But Zoe is chafing against Celia's protectiveness, and the arrival of two young people looking for picking work heralds the end of their remote existence. An intoxicating cocktail of heat, isolation, and the excitement of the forbidden, is destined to trigger youthful passions and bad decisions, changing Celia's world forever.
The play will be performed over two nights, June 26 and 27, in the Shearwater School Hall. The show starts at 7.30pm and will run for about two hours including an intermission. Tickets are $12 or $8 concession and will be available at the door. The play has a mature audience rating MA15+, due to strong themes and course language.
"The virtue of Oswald's funny and tender play is that it's deeply caring of people, irrespective of the mess they create or get themselves into.” (Sydney Morning Herald).
In preparation for the launch of WAVE 2019, The Girl with the Sun in her Face, there has been a flurry of excitement and activity behind the scenes as students from across the High School collaborated to create the singular image for this year's show. Year 9 and 10 Textiles and Design students designed and constructed the costume, modelled by Year 12 student Mayamoon, while Multimedia students captured the photo shoot on location at Brunswick Heads and contributed to the design of the poster.
As the ancestors did long before, we join together to share the joy of music and motion, and pay homage to gatherings prior, and those to come.
The weather gods smiled on the Primary School's annual Bush Dance on Friday evening, when students, staff and families gathered to mark the advent of autumn with song, dance and feasting. Classes 1 to 6 shared dances old and new from around the globe, weaving the ancient and the contemporary with the story of this place and time.
Shearwater students proudly showed their year's work to families and friends during the School's annual Open Day at the end of November - a breathtaking display of colour, creativity, beauty and incredible energy.
The halls are alive with the sound of sewing machines, arc welders, dancing feet, laughter and song as the High School counts the days until opening night. Wearable Arts 2018 - 'Homecoming' is coming to ground and around 200 students from Class 7 to Year 10 are busily creating, with roles as musicians, actors, writers, filmmakers and editors, lighting and audio technicians, carpenters, dancers, singers, tailors, artists, set and prop designers and makers, choreographers, photographers, graphic designers, stage hands, models, judges, ushers, and caterers. Tickets are on sale now via the shearwaterperformingarts.com website. Don't miss out!
Shearwater's strings teachers recently had the privilege of attending a workshop organised by the Australian Chamber Orchestra (ACO) Collective at the Linnaeus Estate. The event was facilitated by the ACO Inspire Quartet (Peter Clark, Jenny Khafagi, William Clark, Paul Zambrowarny). The ACO has a continued commitment to supporting the development of young string players in regional areas throughout Australia, by running workshops and educational programs free of charge. In attendance were members of the Chamber Strings based at the Conservatorium in Lismore and students of the strings program at Mt. St. Patrick College, Murwillumbah. Both groups are directed by renowned strings educator, conductor and artistic director Michael McCabe.
The 3-hour strings workshop was a wonderful platform for both students and local educators to learn and observe rehearsal and performance techniques, alongside some of Australia’s highest calibre musicians. It was a great opportunity for us to attend a strings-specific professional development session which encouraged positive learning and a deeper understanding of the place, purpose and style of music. We hope to integrate and explore these ideas in our own approach to music education and ensemble work this term.
One of the main areas of focus throughout the workshop was the encouragement of positive feelings in music through physical and character changes to suit different styles of music. For example, students were lead to play Mozart with fancy flare, and Bartok as a labouring peasant. The enthusiastic team-teaching approach allowed the quartet members to bounce off one another, thus allowing for a greater understanding and emphasis of the different points made.
Emphasis was also placed on the importance of listening and leadership within the group. Both during sectional tutorials and ensemble work, use was made of group leadership and individualistic ensemble listening activities. This in turn allowed for the students to effectively work together embodying different musical aspects (dynamics, right and left hand techniques, expression) in their creation of music.
Throughout the workshop, the Inspire Quartet demonstrated the different points being made to the students through performance. This was inspiring to experience, as the students were given both visual and auditory examples through which to shape their own music. Energised demonstrations were engaging for all in attendance, not only modelling a great teaching tool, but also the difference in the students’ approaches before and after the demonstration.
The workshop culminated in a performance which parents were invited to attend. It was fantastic to witness the progress in musical expression and understanding which students achieved in the space of a morning.
We look forward to a continued involvement with the ACO in future years and hope to involve some of our more advanced players in future workshop opportunities.
The Shearwater Strings team
© Shearwater The Mullumbimby Steiner School