Diligent rehearsals, bags of enthusiasm and a passion for performing generated a varied and memorable showcase at The Hawth from Ariel’s East Grinstead students.
The show opened with a musical theatre piece from Harry Potter and the Cursed Child. This featured all students so there were performers aged five to 18 bringing to life the magic of Hogwarts.
Other magical musical theatre moments included the Orsinos rendition of kooky comedy The Little Shop of Horrors, followed later by the Ariels delivering a highly polished piece from the Sound of Music. The Prosperos’ piece was the timeless Bugsy Malone. This classic, where children play all the gangster characters, was witty and well received. The older students also shone as they performed a complex version of Carrie with exuberance and style.
The cast chose some inspirational songs to reveal their singing skills. The Ariel students treated the audience to a beautiful performance of ‘You’ve Got a Friend’ while the Prosperos provided great harmonies on ‘A Million Dreams’ from The Greatest Showman. Bringing a modern twist to the evening, the Orsinos sang the motivational and catchy ‘Unwritten’ by Natasha Bedingfield while the Tampests delivered a rousing version of ‘Radioactive’ by Imagine Dragons.
Strong drama has always been at the heart of the award-winning academy and the evening provided some emotive performances. A precisely choreographed physical theatre piece was staged by the Ariels based upon the story of a clockwork ballerina featuring a solo performance to compliment the piece brilliantly. A powerful performance telling the story of the Suffragettes was delivered with pace by the Orsinos, while the oldest student’s drama piece was from Things I Know to Be True, which was acted with total realism.
The East Grinstead Othellos group and their buddies brought to life the groundbreaking play The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, which was very thought-provoking.
Throughout the whole evening the students were given an opportunity to shine and show how much they had progressed, delighting their families and supporters.
The final number from the whole academy was a cover of ‘Sing’ from acapella vocal group the Pentatonix, an aptly chosen celebration of how fantastic music makes you feel.
East Grinstead Academy principal Karen Brown said: “I was so pleased with the show and the dedication of all the students. This year we had a great mix of experienced and new students. Everyone supported each other and worked together to ensure the pieces were fully prepared and could be delivered with confidence. Our East Grinstead students really embody the Ariel ethos and worked as a team. Thanks also to all the dedicated tutors who work tirelessly and inspire the students to produce such professional work. It was a night to remember!”
The East Grinstead Academy has recently moved to Imberhorne School, East Grinstead, and now has space for more students. For a free trial call 01444 250407 or visit the Ariel website. There is no audition process and everyone is welcome.
Contributed by Ariel.
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