Glenmore SHS students Hayley Green, Anna Riley and Chloe Sloan soaking up today's event.
Glenmore SHS students Hayley Green, Anna Riley and Chloe Sloan soaking up today's event.

Rocky’s high school theatre talent impresses big guns

HOPES of once again performing in front of a live audience were this year all but dashed for theatre lovers across the country amid COVID-19.

But for Glenmore State High School students Anna Riley, Chloe Sloan and Hayley Green, their return to the stage proved nothing short of memorable – as Queensland Theatre officials watched on.

The Year 10 trio were on Thursday among a number of the region’s drama students – Emmaus College and Rockhampton State High School included – to take part in The Scene Project at Rockhampton’s Pilbeam Theatre.

Each cohort undertook an eight week digital unit leading up to the event, requiring a 15-minute interpretation of renowned screenwriter David Burton’s ‘Wisdom’.

It depicts a new world experience in which humans are forcibly injected with a government mandated vaccine to prevent the signs of physical ageing.

Students from Emmaus College take to the stage at Rockhampton's Pilbeam Theatre.
Students from Emmaus College take to the stage at Rockhampton's Pilbeam Theatre.

“We took chunks of the play and modified it to suit what we wanted to do,” Ms Sloan explained.

“We came up with something and put it all together and it turned out really good,” added Ms Riley.

An opportunity to perform for the state’s largest theatre company was something Ms Sloan admitted she would likely never forget.

“It’s amazing, I’ve always wanted to be an actor and to be able to come here and perform with those people and have them teach us, it’s a really great opportunity for us.”

While nerves understandably ran high, Ms Sloan believes the chance to witness other schools share their performance created a welcoming environment for all.

“It’s really awesome, I was kind of worried that we would mess up, but we did really well, and I love seeing other people’s creativity.”

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Qld theatre Artist director Lee Lewis was on hand to watch Rockhampton’s talent take to the stage.
Qld theatre Artist director Lee Lewis was on hand to watch Rockhampton’s talent take to the stage.

Ms Green also commended both Emmaus and Rockhampton SHS students on their impressive theatrical talents and unique interpretations.

“I found that when we all came together as one big group it just really drove us to inspiration, and it showed us that there is multiple ways of doing things, not just the one,” she said.

While the school-based initiative makes it return, preparation leading up to the event provided its share of COVID-19 related challenges.

Queensland Theatre artistic director Lee Lewis was on hand to watch the region’s talent, labelling each showcase as “amazing.”

“I think there’s some very talented teachers here and they’re bringing out the very best in their students, and that’s just a delight to see,” she said.

“Whether they’ve had less or more time to practise that’s hard to tell, but I know they’ve just been working so hard.”

The statewide program will next visit Mackay, before reaching Townsville by the end of the month. It will continue across Brisbane throughout September.