“Not only have I learnt about the amazing world of theatre, I’ve learnt about myself and how a little confidence can change almost everything.”
Truro School’s Head of Drama, Jo Egar, speaks to the cast of last week’s Burrell triumph, The Tempest.
What do you get if you cross seven tonnes of sand with a life-size puppet and water sprinklers placed strategically above the heads of the audience? It could only be our Drama Department’s inspired production of The Tempest. Directed by the brilliant Benjamin Symes from cube theatre, it was enjoyed by parents, pupils and public alike, who flocked to the Burrell last week.
The production worked its ‘rough magic’ on audience, cast and crew – providing many with lasting memories.
Megan (Human Miranda and voice of puppet Miranda):
“The Tempest was amazing to be involved in. Most people who saw the production would probably not believe that we had to call an extra rehearsal the night before! However, all the hours of work and encouragement from our fab new Head of Drama, Miss Egar, and Cube’s Benjamin Symes paid off. The show was a huge success – even though there was sand absolutely everywhere! The cast, from all years of the school, worked together as a team to tell the story. The vocal warm ups and pre-show dances were definitely a highlight! Being in the show gave us all an opportunity to get a taste of a professional theatre company whilst exploring Shakespeare’s work and making new friends. It was particularly beneficial for us 5th Years as our English set text is ‘The Tempest’. We now know the play maybe a little too well! It feels strange that it’s over, but the memories of such a magical play will stay with the cast and crew for a long time yet.”
“Being in The Tempest has got to be the most brilliant thing I’ve done in years. Not only have I learnt about the amazing world of theatre, I’ve learnt about myself and how a little confidence can change almost everything. I’ve enjoyed every minute I spent as Ariel, who, in my slightly biased opinion, is by far the best character. The cast members, crew members and directors were all excellent at what they did and the performance would have suffered without a single one of them. I hope I did justice to a production which will, without a doubt, stay with me for the rest of my life.”
Annabel (Queen Alonsa):
“This year’s production really was quite special. I thoroughly enjoyed my role of ‘Queenie’ – as my fellow actors called me – and loved my costume! The set was unlike anything I’ve worked with before: a sloping sand-based stage with a desk and a boat placed at either end. Ben Symes did a fantastic job with directing the play – and I’m also grateful to Lottie Symes for her patience with my flash paper skills! This is the third production I have been in at the school, and I would recommend anyone to get involved, as the experience is unforgettable.”
Cameron (shared the role of Ferdinand):
“The whole experience was fantastic as it was my first time acting in a play. The fact that we used a puppet as Miranda was surreal and gave me plenty of challenges when I had to fall in love with her! The amount of excitement during the show is amazing and the feeling you have during the curtain call is just the best feeling in the world. It was great working with everyone and I made a lot of new friends. I feel that the production has helped me build my confidence – particularly because we performed in front of the two oldest year groups. I’m now far more confident at trying out new things and hope to go into the profession of acting one day. I would also like to thank Ben Symes and Jo Egar as they have been fantastic mentors and great support.”
Arsen Novak (Prospero):
“It was an unforgettable experience to be part of this production and work with a very talented cast and tech team. Most of all, it was a real privilege be directed by Ben Symes.”
Benjamin Symes (Director):
“I want to thank the cast and crew for working together in the last few days and rising to the challenge! It was a tough road working on a challenging set in an incredibly short time frame but we got there in the end and the audiences really enjoyed the shows. I hope the students are proud of what we achieved and also learned real lessons about how theatre works.”
You can see a selection of photographs from The Tempest in our gallery.