Cranleigh Prep School pupils performed two Shakespeare plays at The Leatherhead Theatre on 15th October, as part of the Shakespeare Schools’ Festival 2013. A thousand schools take part in the festival, in one hundred and twenty different theatres.
Thirty of our Form 3 pupils presented a lively and exciting version of The Tempest. Dressed in basic boiler suits with status suggested by added costume fragments, the production was a team effort with the cast becoming scenery as well as playing characters to tell the story, with a sense of fun throughout. Here are the appraisal notes:
- We began with a fantastic storm sequence – the ensemble filling the stage. They created the stricken ship and took us with them into the tempest, with Prospero conjuring from above.
- Excellent grasp of the text by this young company, with some lovely narration and accomplished vocal work throughout. I was also impressed with the strong connections and relationships between characters.
- Really atmospheric sound and lighting design – operated by the excellent student technicians – capturing the mystery of the island.
- Effective, precise costuming, with a clear distinction drawn between our groups of characters, their status and position.
- Lovely sense of mischief and magic – so vital to this play – handled with a lightness of touch and some great comedic moments.
A bright and engaging piece of storytelling from this young, confident cast.
Much Ado About Nothing was the play chosen for Form 6 pupils. The
talented cast produced many mature performances which brought out and relished the humour of the situations, with the serious and dramatic elements cutting through the mood. The large public audience was enthusiastic and very appreciative. Here are the appraisal notes:
- We were treated to beautiful live music from the outset – setting the tone and period -enriching the drama and drawing us into the world of the play.
- They demonstrated a real command of the language, with excellent projection throughout and clear, precise diction.
- I was impressed by the connected performance work – with strong vocal and physical choices made and the characters acted from head to toe.
- Particularly enjoyed the scenes concerning the plot to unite Beatrice and Benedick . They were imaginatively staged and performed, with some lovely comedic moments.
- In contrast, there was an effective change in mood and atmosphere during Hero’s doomed first wedding and Beatrice’s subsequent plea to Benedick. They showed real commitment to the drama as well as the comedy, before leading us to the happy conclusion and energetic curtain call!
A confident and funny production from this accomplished, young company.