This semester year 9 Drama students have been working on a project through Malthouse Theatre in Melbourne known as ‘The Suitcase Series’. At the beginning of term 3, students were handed an original script for a play called ‘Turbine’, written by playwright Dan Giovannoni. The students read through and analysed each scene extensively, working together to re-shape the script in a way that made the most sense to them.
The students’ version of the ‘Turbine’ script explored the issue of climate change in a way that was symbolic, creative and extremely thought-provoking. Once the script was finalised and roles were assigned, the students worked tirelessly with Mrs Blomeley during lunch times and after school hours to rehearse and perfect their performance, working together to create props, costumes and set items.
At 5:30am on Monday 31st October, the students piled into a bus weary-eyed yet full of enthusiasm, ready to perform at Malthouse Theatre in Melbourne. They perfected their hair and makeup on the way and were on the stage by 10am, performing in front of 5 other schools, as well as theatre professionals. The students performed to a standard that was on par, if not beyond that of their inner-city peers. Their performance was symbolic in its portrayal of the effects of climate change, linking each scene to one of the five stages of grieving using dance, music, body percussion, soundscapes, mime, poetry, comedy and the use of a butterfly as a motif. After the performance the students answered questions from the audience and professional theatre workers about these characteristics, responding in a way that showed maturity beyond their years.
The Education Director for Malthouse Theatre, Vanessa O’Neil, did not believe Mrs Blomeley when she told her that the students were only in year 9. Vanessa commented on the students’ level of professionalism and said that the way in which the kids interpreted and performed the script reflects the kind of creativity, critical thinking and cohesion that you would usually only see in a senior class.
Mrs Blomeley and the rest of Xavier High School are so proud of these students (names below), and we can’t wait to see what they come up with next.
(Names from back)
Jack Mitsch, Ben Perez, Lachlan Conway, Teaghan keen, Laura Opdam
Claudia Lethlean, Cassidy Frederick, Paris McFarlane, Beth Velikans, Sarah Jankauskus, Niamh Morrison, Lillian Brigden.
Absent: Alice Wallace
See the full performace bellow