Arabian Nights began with a visual spectacle of colour and movement that transported the audience artfully to an ancient world full of wonderful stories. Shahrazad’s funny and exotic tales were truly entertaining; presented innovatively to us by a superb ensemble cast. Individual actors came forward to shine for a tale or two and then merged back into the background to create a living back drop for the next story.
Ms Hooper and Dr Barnsley have done superbly well to draw in all of the KS3 students, who rose to the occasion with accomplished performances. Year 7s such as Peter Heard showed real composure as the pragmatic steward in ‘The Story of the Envious Sisters,’ whilst the graceful Year 8 Orla Dunne held the audience captive as Marjanah in ‘Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves’ with her assured storytelling and dance. Year 9s students such as Eleanor Powell added layers of sensitivity to the bold and incredible story lines. Whilst the anchor of the show, Anabella Fairgrieve, as Shahrazad drew us in at all times with her compassionate and wise characterisation.
The whole evening was a real celebration of the talent within our college. Every student on stage was clearly thrilled to be involved and this joy transferred onto the audience, who left feeling as though they had been somewhere magical for an hour or two.
Huge congratulations to Ms Hooper and Dr Barnsely for their wonderful direction. Mrs Nelson’s choreography was a class above, with the marvellous Anna Zammit leading the dancing with elegant poise.
But who can forget the enduring image of the night? Young Casey McColgan as Abu Hassan, poised at the top of the stage steps, breaking wind like Beyoncé – locks flowing and cloak rising in the breeze. A shocking moment of rip-roaring fun!
Arabian Nights was enchanting- we want more, more, more like this next year please!