Performing Arts in the COVID Era

This has certainly been a remarkable year! I think the word of the year is ‘unprecedented’, which can be heard all too frequently in the media. Term 3 has been a very challenging time in the performing arts, with all classes conducted offsite and our usual student recitals requiring a rethink. Carey’s music and drama staff have worked creatively and with generous commitment to ensure that student learning has continued.

There has been a great deal of progress in the performing arts happening amongst our Middle School students. As I review our term mark book and see the huge amount of work completed, I am confident that throughout Middle School there has been considerable development in both understanding and skills in the performing arts, despite the adverse conditions. My sincere congratulations to all of our students who have had to adapt to unique circumstances, often learning independently without their peers by their side or direct oversight by a teacher.

In instrumental music, work has continued at an impressive rate, despite the sometimes dodgy internet connections and the challenge of developing musical qualities through laptop speakers and microphones. Much of this splendid work will be on display in our recitals, which were streamed this week. Families who want to witness some of the great instrumental work happening in homes around Melbourne are encouraged to watch these virtual recitals:

Our vocal department, under the direction of Alicia Bendall, has also produced a virtual form of Cabaret night (pictured). This recital of contemporary vocal styles features singers from Year 7 to 12. Tune into the impressive vocal performances for a night of jazz, musical theatre and pop/rock with accompaniment from the Carey Cabaret Trio and footage from special guests Keyless.

However, despite all of these positive stories, there are many areas of the performing arts where we have lost out this year. Our ensembles are currently silent, our choirs voiceless, and we have lost two highlights of the performing arts year: the Middle School Musical and the Middle School Play and country tour. Both of these have been running so successfully for the past 20 years! Please rest assured we have great plans and look forward to providing some fantastic opportunities in 2021.

Year 9 students who successfully auditioned for Strictly Ballroom have already been encouraged to audition for the Senior School Musical in 2021. Year 7 and 8 students who successfully auditioned will automatically have a spot available in the 2021 Middle School Musical.

Martin Arnold
Head of Music

Category: