Glen Innes High School’s Year 11 Drama Class had three students perform at the prestigious State Drama Festival held at The Seymour Centre in Sydney on October 25 and 26. Jessica Waters, Heidi McCormick and Callista Sheridan did the high school proud with their performances during three shows over the two days.
Their journeys to these performances were each slightly different.
Jessica attended State Drama Camp (along with Callista and fellow GIHS drama students Michael Miller and Bailey Ratliff) from July 1-5. While at camp they were split into different groups to write and develop an ensemble piece.
The piece titled The Free Upgrade, which was developed by Jessica’s ensemble, was considered of a high enough standard to feature at festival.
After returning from camp Heidi and Callista auditioned for the NSW State Drama Ensemble, along with several of their classmates. These two excellent actors were selected to travel to Sydney for one week during school holidays to help develop and perform in an ensemble piece called And They All Came Tumbling Down.
Jessica, Heidi and Callista then travelled back to Sydney to finish rehearsing and perform their pieces to packed audiences. They also were able to attend workshops run by NIDA (National Institute of Dramatic Art) – an amazing opportunity for high school students.
These three actors have done an outstanding job representing Glen Innes and holding their own against 80 other high schools statewide. To have three actors selected from a small high school like Glen Innes is a testament to the talent we have in Glen Innes and the remarkable ability their teacher, Genevieve Byrne, has of bringing out the best in her students. GIHS is very fortunate to have a teacher of her calibre.
The Free Upgrade (State Drama Camp Ensemble, including Jessica Waters)
This piece was a comment on today’s consumerism and the way technology distorts reality. It is about one man being trapped within the cycle of ‘the free upgrade’ and his inability to escape today’s rampant consumerism. His efforts to resist technology only last as long as it takes for him to discover ‘the latest technological trend’.
And They All Came Tumbling Down (NSW Public Schools State Drama Ensemble, including Heidi McCormick and Callista Sheridan)
A tale of power, betrayal, lust, despair and – most importantly – of the general flippancy of a group of people and their lack of ability to maintain consistency in leadership due to their own individual need for influence and power. All told from the perspective of the people who live in their wasteland.