News Column

The Sound of Music – Year 5 & 6 Production Club – St Christopher's School Saar Campus

June 25, 2014

As the father-of-four children aged from 11 to 30 I can honestly say I've seen my fair share of school productions and now as a parent governor I often feel obliged to show up as often as I can when invited, even if my remaining child here is not on stage.The Year 5 & 6 production of Roger and Hammerstein's classic, however, proved to be no obligatory matter but a pure privilege to witness. This all-singing and all-dancing spectacular, nicely condensed without losing the plot, was enhanced by some fine costumes, fabulous scenery and exquisite sound and lighting, plus tiered seating which combined turned a school hall into a comfortable theatrical experience.The fine vocals were accompanied by 'live music' rather than backing tracks thanks to the music maestros of a school band made up of teachers and pupils.The St Chris production had deliberate Bahrain undertones with school buses to boot chasing across the set, although I was a little confused by the use of two leading ladies playing the role of scatty nun-cum nanny and bride-to-be, Maria. The show ran for two nights, so each could have played a starring role for a whole show. Nonetheless, Breatice Tinsley and Aaliah Shahry were both delightful, with super voices and perfect stage presence.Luke Bennett played Captain George von Trapp with aplomb and dashing Digby Rushton also impressed as wheeler-dealer showman, Max Detweiler.The brown-shirted nasty soldiers from the original movie didn't wear their Nazi insignia on their armbands but just as powerful cross symbols. I wonder if that was deliberate and in clever reference to the chilling teeny thriller Noughts & Crosses, written by Malorie Blackman, and set in a world where the whites (the Noughts) were former slaves and the black (Crosses) population rules the roost.The van Trapp children, namely Karma Alami (Liesl), Yousif Al Khateed (Friedrich), Zach Shamma (Kurt), Kamilah El Kanfoudi (Brigitta), Freya Evans-Woolf (Marta) and cute Trudy Beckett-McInroy (Gretel), were endearing and their superb singing voices were backed admirably by the choir-quality supporting cast.A triumph for all involved and a tough show to beat next year. Stan Szecowka

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Source: Gulf Weekly (Bahrain)

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