Today, 25 January, is exactly a month since Christmas so we are taking a look back to some of the Christmas celebrations we had at RNC at the end of last term. We had the Xmas Factor, won by Erin Boyce and some of our students were involved in their own theatre production of an original piece; Christmas Shenanigans. Every Wednesday afternoon our students have the chance to take part in a learning and leisure session where they are able to take part in an activity that is not necessarily related to their course. For the students in the performing arts learning and leisure group, they wanted to put on a Christmas performance. Performing Arts Teacher Cara Tivey said “It was a very ambitious task for them to put on such a big production, but they were all determined to do it.”
A Level student Kim Jeffreys from Staffordshire goes on to describe the production “The story is loosely based on a Christmas Carol, where we came up with the name Elouisa Scrooge and during one of our improv sessions we came up with the concept of Christmas being cancelled. I would describe it as a grown up version of the nativity play where we mocked some of the obvious clichés and made it into a comedy.“ Health and Social Care Teacher Jane Lush, who supports the learning and leisure sessions, explained “Myself and Cara were there to give support but the ideas essentially came from the students – they have amazing capability to work as a team.” Kim adds “We’re all friends outside of learning and leisure so it was easy to meet up, talk and share ideas.”
Although, from an audience perspective, the performance seemed to go smoothly, Kim describes the chaos that was going on backstage “It was crazy: everyone was so nervous before the performance, we had one person faint and one person had an asthma attack! Luckily Zizi (BTEC Level 3 Performing Arts student) stepped in. She was only meant to be helping out with the costumes and had only come along to two rehearsals but she was such a good sport wearing the most ridiculous donkey costume that everyone found hilarious!” Cara Tivey commended the group “What struck me most about the whole production was the professionalism of the students, they had a lot to plan on just one session a week and did a lot of it in their own time. They also had to get used to the space in the performance studio which is not easy and of course they had the audience to contend with on the night, there was a lot of laughter from the start, which I think helped to calm their nerves.”
Well it’s only 11 months until Christmas now – let’s hope the learning and leisure group have an even better production up their sleeves for next Christmas!
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Article written by Bik Lee, Digital Media Officer at RNC