It’s Production Week!
June 18, 2021
One of the highlights of our annual calendar is the TIGS production week. It is viewed with great excitement by our Junior School students as something that they can’t wait to get involved in. At the same time, our Year 7 to Year 11 school students often find this demanding project a highlight of their year. The TIGS production is a learning opportunity, a collaboration opportunity, a wellbeing approach and a great time for everyone involved. It is also extremely demanding, a long term commitment both in and out of school time and often requires our young people to step outside of their comfort zone and discover strengths that they never even knew they had!
In 2020 one of our great losses was the cancellation of the Production of “The Little Mermaid”, I know that some students still feel this loss keenly, especially those who would not get another opportunity to be involved in a TIGS production, COVID has impacted everyone in ways that were deeply felt and this was one of them.
This year we have been fortunate to be able to present My Fair Lady for our community. Performers have been rehearsing, learning choreography and memorising lines. The orchestra has been practising and our tech, makeup and stagehands have been getting everything in order. Everyone has been learning, collaborating, practising wellbeing and having fun.
The skills involved in a venture of this size and complexity are huge. Our students are learning technical, creative and practical skills. They learn them formally from specialists as well as informally from each other. This increasing competence across multiple areas leads to confidence in themselves and in each other.
A production is not a collection of solo performances. Even the lead roles are only successful if the other roles and responsibilities are doing their part. One of the things I most enjoy in the lead up to production is listening to our students solving technical or creative challenges together. Listening to different insights and coaching each other to success.
The opportunity for diverse relationships and connections that occur amongst the cast and crew are just spectacular. Students in different grades, social groups and who, under different circumstances, would not interact at all, become firm and lasting friends as a result of working together on our School production. This is such a wonderful mechanism for wellbeing and student safety.
It may be hard to believe that something that is so much work could actually be a lot of fun, but this is the case! Our students and the staff really enjoy being part of the TIGS Production each year. They work very hard, but they also get a great deal of enjoyment out of the entire experience.
The Production is a fine example of shared endeavour. An opportunity for a variety of students and staff to come together with a common purpose, all dependent on each other for success and all willing to work hard not for personal gain but for the collective performance. It is a great thing to be a part of something bigger than yourself, where your unique and individual skills and talents are recognised, appreciated and leveraged to create something amazing. The Production offers this opportunity for our students in the Senior School.
When I interview potential captains in Year 11 I ask them if they have any regrets about their time so far at TIGS. One thing that does come up is that they wish they had gotten involved in things like the Production earlier. So if your son or daughter has not yet dipped their toe in a production experience, I encourage you to discuss it with them – it will be an experience they will never forget.
By the time you are reading this newsletter, there will only be three shows left of My Fair Lady, if you haven’t got your ticket yet, I recommend that you go online and secure your seat – I guarantee a fantastic performance.
Isabella Perri in Year 8 Shares her Production experience
“Our 2021 school production, My Fair Lady, was all about making new friends, trying new things and broadening our minds. There were various types of roles available including dancing, acting and singing roles for everyone to show off their talent. Personally, I loved how the production cultivated many new skills so we could present them to parents, peers, teachers and the general audience. During rehearsals, we practised our dancing, singing and acting scenes separately in year groups to conform with the COVID – 19 regulations. There were also orchestra roles for students with talent with musical instruments. The school production rehearsals worked on the group’s craftmanship of the musical and the participation in the school production enabled students to connect and work with other age groups in a team environment. The initial thought that each student may have had in signing up for the production may have raised the curiosity as to “why”? Why participate in the School production as an extracurricular activity? Why do something out of my comfort zone? The answer is simple: it helps you grow as an individual through confidence building and finding yourself.”
“Having the ability to audition for a role or presenting a scene in front of your peers helps you understand the extent of an individual’s growth. In my initial year of being involved in the production, I felt a bond with my peers through the support we had shown each other and the encouragement of everyone around me. Being a dancer, having the ability to perform and showcase a part of me that not many people would have been aware of and having the opportunity to be with others from my daily life that endure the same passion is one of the many reasons I loved the production. As a year 8 student, my three roles in the production were, firstly, as a flower girl, then as a maid of Miss Higgins and finally as an entertainer, which permitted me to demonstrate my dance, acting and singing attributes. As a maid, I had the opportunity to perform amongst the leading roles of our production and as an entertainer, I had the opportunity to exhibit my personal dance talent. Overall, the passion and dedication shown by the cast, orchestra ensemble and the teachers in creating the work that was ultimately presented to both our fellow students and the audience proved to be an invaluable experience and opportunity that will remain with us forever.”