Miss F. Smith, Subject Leader: Dance, writes:
On Friday 10th March, our dance students performed in this year’s dance production, ‘Malice in Wonderland’. Unlike previous dance shows, we decided to have principal dancers who played characters from the story of Alice in Wonderland and that the whole production would have the narrative suggested throughout. Alice was danced by Lucy Connolly in 10A and the production followed her journey through her imagined wonderland, first meeting characters such as white rabbits, the Cheshire Cat, danced by Jess Elsley 11K, butterflies and street dancing flowers. Alice’s journey continued as she met the Mad Hatter, Leah Garrod 10H and The Queen of Hearts, Megan Kwashi 10K.
The opening of the whole show began with the White Rabbit, Fran Hall in 10O, who lured Alice down the rabbit hole and into Wonderland. This production demanded a lot from the main roles as they were often included in other dances too in order to tell the story. I have to congratulate them all on their professionalism and tremendous efforts in making this successful.
The production showcased the talents of a wide variety of Stanborough students, not only our BTEC dancers but also the members of our dance clubs, which have all been run by our students. The performances included different genres of dance, including Contemporary, Sassy Commercial and Street Dance. A particular highlight of the show, and a real crowd pleaser, was ‘The Flowers’, a Year 9 club piece choreographed by Tatiana Lwin 11K, Jess Elsley 11K and Tanya Enerst 11B, which included a mix of different songs and was a real fun, high energy piece. This year we also saw a musical theatre piece, choreographed by Jess Kingsley 11K and Jess Elsley 11K, to Blackout from the musical, ‘In the Heights’ and was cleverly adapted to fit the theme of the production.
Several pupils also took advantage of our audition process and there was a particularly memorable trio by Amy Sharp, Tilly North and Kaitlyn Batchelor displaying Alice’s arrival into Wonderland. Lamar Coombs 7O also impressed the audience with his confident solo and Marci Lewis 9S and Ruth Morgan 9A performed a Tap duet, which fitted into the Queen of Hearts section of the production.
Other highlights of the show were the Year 10 and 11 BTEC assessment pieces. The Year 10’s performed a dramatic, contemporary piece in which the dancers represented different versions of Alice during her journey in the story. It included solos, duets, contact work and group sections with a lot of exits and entrances which the students handled brilliantly. A surprise of the evening was the opening of the second half which began with a dance film performed by the Year 11 dancers, edited by Tatiana Lwin and which had been planned and filmed by Steph Conder in Year 12. The film was a successful addition and really set the scene of the live performance which followed. There were some great performances by the Year 11’s in a challenging piece with lots of props and scenery. Yas Myers and Maia Fitzgerald added some humour to the piece as Tweedledum and Tweedledee, and delighted the audience as they threw tea bags to them.
Alice’s journey took a bizarre turn when she met characters from Super Mario… or rather the staff dancers. Special mention to Mr Cunningham for his excellent interpretation of the choreography and to Mr ‘Mario’ Harris and Miss ‘Princess Peach’ Bowen for their super duet and assisted jump which started the piece.
We had two narrators this year, Lily O’Keeffe and James Atkins, who worked with the script to add humour and narrative to the production. Their duet in the finale was also very well received.
Our dance students took full advantage of performing on a professional stage at the Weston Auditorium. With excellent lighting and sound facilities, this truly enhanced their overall performance and helped make this production magical and memorable.
All our dance students were a credit to themselves and the school throughout the day and during the evening’s performance. They worked extremely hard and should be very proud of all they have achieved. I couldn’t be prouder of them all and am delighted with their commitment and professional performances. I’m looking forward to doing it all again next year!
Well done to you all.