Our resilient performers

If ever there has been a need for resilience, this is it!

What are the performing arts about? The simple answer is sharing the joy of music and story with fellow performers and an audience. However, despite the frustrations of lockdown, resilience is evident in abundance. As I write this, I see a message going out from one of our instrumental staff to their students saying, ‘Great conference today, you all played brilliantly!’. Yes, music making continues in the bedrooms and studies around Melbourne. I continue to be amazed at how well our music staff and their students have adapted to remote learning. It is a credit to both students and teachers that so much learning has continued.

We have choirs ready to sing for you, bands and orchestras with music to perform, and our actors have scenes ready to present. Of course, we cannot predict how the COVID-19 story will unfold in coming months, but we will continue to try to find ways to provide the greatest possible range of quality performing arts experiences for our groups.

Planning for our Christmas Carol play performances and tour are continuing, with the second round of auditions going online. We’ll probably have to work smarter with reduced preparation time but I’m sure it will be a terrific experience for the 46 actors and musicians involved. It has been an interesting journey adapting the script from the original text. Like all great plays, although the story is nearly 200 years old, it is as relevant today as the day it was written. Whilst Scrooge is sometimes caricatured as a weird outsider, we will play him much more as a very human man who has miscalculated the balance between personal ambition and the need to connect with others, making his view of the world very blinkered.

Let’s hope that by October we’ll be able to put the story and its associated instrumental music, song and dance together and make some wonderful theatre!

Martin Arnold
Head of Music