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
The Year 11 Drama students are hard at work rehearsing Georges Buchner's Woyzeck to be performed next week, with a sneak preview this Friday night.
Buchner began writing Woyzeck when he was just 22 years old, two years before his death, of typhus, in 1837. The play is considered the first ever working-class tragedy as well as the first ‘truly modern' drama.
Our production developed organically into an exploration of the exploitation of the poor, rather than the story of a crime of passion. We try to express the tragedy of this poetically, through different styles of performance and movement, inspired by Pina Bausch, the evocative music of Tom Waits and the theatre techniques of Bertolt Brecht’s Epic Theatre, as well as a symbolic set.
We would like to thank the office staff for ticketing and sales, Nick Thorne for lending us Mirri’s skate ramp and Tony, Nick and the maintenance crew for setting it up and willingly helping with whatever we needed. Rhys Edwards has been wonderful in organising and coordinating the entertainment crew in sound and vision. We are extremely grateful for all the time and energy given to us by Vasudha Harte, who helped bring the music to life. We have loved the journey together and hope you enjoy the performance!
The play will preview on Friday June 8, followed by two more performances on Tuesday June 12 and Wednesday June 13. The show starts at 7pm. Tickets are available from the Office or at the door and cost $12/$8 conc. Soups, sweets, snacks and beverages will be available from 6.15pm outside the Hall. Phone 6684 3223 for more information.
Don't miss this opportunity to support our amazing Year 11 performers and Entertainment crew. We look forward to seeing you there!
Shearwater is calling on creatives from around Australia to enter costumes in the school’s 2018 Wearable Arts Performance Event, 'Homecoming: Labyrinth of Twists and Turns'. Entrants in this year’s event, to be performed in November, will vie for a prize pool of almost $8,000.
Wearable Arts (or WAVE) is a major annual event in Shearwater's performing arts calendar, showcasing costumes created by Shearwater students, staff and the wider community, in a highly professional, choreographed production that encompasses design, music, dance, drama and technology. 2018 will mark Shearwater's 15th Wearable Arts event.
Check out the shearwaterperformingarts.com website for more info on how to enter a costume and unleash your imagination!
The Year 11 Drama students are hard at work on their production of Georg Buchner's timeless play, Woyzeck, one of the most influential and performed plays in German theatre. Hailed as theatre's 'first modern drama', Woyzeck offers the students an opportunity for creative, sculptural exploration in staging, as well as artistic and expressionistic stylisation in the performance. The story is simple and dynamic, with the added bonus of a Tom Waits movie soundtrack, some songs from which we are hoping to include in our version.
The play will be performed next term, June 13-15, in the Shearwater Hall. Watch this space!
© Shearwater The Mullumbimby Steiner School