Last night (Monday 12th November 2018) I had the great pleasure of going to the Theatre Royal in Bury St Edmunds to watch Hare Class (year 5) perform Henry V to a paying audience.
For the last few weeks Mrs Power and Hare Class have been working with Annie Eddington from the Theatre Royal to prepare for their performance. This is the first year that our school have participated in the Takeover Programme. The programme provided pupils with the opportunity to watch a professional production of Henry V, by The Tobacco Factory and create their own response to this, with the guidance of an experienced professional (Annie). This year we performed alongside year 5 and 6 pupils from Risby Primary and All Saints Primary Schools.
The performance was thoroughly enjoyed by all of the audience and the children gained such a lot from being part of it.
The children were overwhelmingly positive of their experience - here is just a snippet of their feedback:
"I grew in confidence by being part of this experience" Livvy
"I enjoyed participating in Henry V. I learnt to project my voice so people could hear my lines. Learning my lines was a challenge, they were in French so they were really hard. I practised my lines every night and I had to do it to my family." Sebby
"I learnt that I had a good voice and I could go up on stage and overcome my fears. This has helped me to be confident when leading Collective Worship and when performing in class. I think year 5 should DEFINITELY do it again next year because you overcome your fears on stage and it's fun and enjoyable." Dominic
"I have enjoyed participating in Henry V. I enjoyed the Battle of Agincourt and performing at the Theatre Royal. I have learnt that I do not have stage fright anymore and that I can act! I would recommend this to next year's class because it gives you a chance to do something you have never done before." Tallulah
"I really enjoyed performing Henry V, especially the lights and the music. I found walking out onto the stage to perform really challenging, but I composed myself and performed." Elliott
"I learnt that I can go up on stage and do it. I overcame my fears by showing everyone who I am and that I can project my voice more in front of people. Its helped me with reading and remembering my lines. It was fun and enjoyable and you can overcome your fears on stage." Sophie H
Many of the children commented on their growth in confidence and overcoming challenges of remembering lines and performing in front of a large audience. They rated the experience at 10 - excellent!
"Every single member of Hare Class that performed were fantastic and I know that my daughter has thoroughly enjoyed the whole experience. I feel that they formed quite a bond with Annie from the Theatre Royal and was such an amazing experience at a young age to have the opportunity to take part in. I would wholeheartedly agree with adding this as a feature of the year 5 curriculum."
"One word - Brilliant!! My daughter has thoroughly enjoyed rehearsing & performing at the Theatre Royal!!! The class did so well & we were all very impressed! Thank You."
"I am writing to confirm my full support for your suggestion that this become a regular part of the year 5 curriculum. I am certain that the experience that the children get from this will stay with them forever. It provides significant learning opportunities beyond the obvious (i.e. English Lit). My child has been fully engaged with this and has loved it! I am so glad that he has had the opportunity to be part of it.
Thank you to you and your team for making this possible"
"We were all very impressed with the high standard of the children's performance at the Theatre Royal. The atmosphere was full of excitement and anticipation. The children were obviously enjoying themselves during the afternoon and leading up to the performance. My child had been apprehensive before school on Monday, however we feel it was a great boost to his confidence. He was still very excited when we arrived home and kept going through the whole script. In our view it was extremely beneficial, enabling the children to work together and support each other. Thank you very much for giving him the opportunity and for allowing us the chance to see the result."
"We came to see the play as a family, and we all thoroughly enjoyed it. The children did so well to be on stage. They showed provided a fabulous play and should all be ever so proud of themselves. We feel very proud of our daughter and so pleased she gets to have these wonderful experiences... we hope there will be many more for the children of Great Barton. Thank you so much!"
"We thought that it was brilliant! I thought the opportunity to perform at the Theatre Royal with other schools was fantastic. The children did exceptionally well, especially all the Henry Vs. Thank you for all the hard work, organising and effort you must have put in."
"Absolutely awesome performance from all 3 schools, lots of lines to learn and stage positioning to memorise culminated in an emphatic success. The children really came into their own which was great to see. Super show!"