Earlier this year a group of 28 students went to Rotherham to take part in the regional heats of Rock Challenge – a national schools dance competition.
Bingley Grammar School came away with awards in four sections thanks to our students dedication and team spirit. Here is a report from Mr Bellenie about the day itself and the months of practice that went into making the performance a success:
Back in Autumn 2016 Alisha Smith, one of our Year 13 students, decided she wanted to build on the previous year’s success and enter again with a mixed group comprised of Year 7- 12 students. Rehearsals commenced on Wednesdays after school with sessions open to everyone. As the weeks went by the cast were whittled down to the present number as Alisha set her innovative choreography.
Then finally the day arrived on Monday 13th March and with the Mirror frame (the set) loaded we set off! Excitement was bubbling, last minute tech instructions were given out by Alisha - Mrs Presland was in charge of videography and I myself lighting duties.
We arrived in good time and walked through a maze of corridors to reach the space we shared with three others ‘teams’. We found out we were designated team 8 out of 9 as we entered the main auditorium wearing our wristbands. The vibe was unbelievable, everybody buzzing as the tech rehearsals began.
Just after 3pm we began our tech. It was most gratifying to see the nerves fall away as the first run through began. Then the piece was run again with music and lighting cues, again I noted how the piece grew in stature as all the different elements came together.
Every company went through this process and we were able to view our 5 rivals. Not all the groups were in our competition as some had already qualified: Tong were up against Rodillian Academy who were both showcasing Premier teams. It showed as their pieces featured complex narratives with several scene changes. Hmm I thought to myself, how much were their budgets compared to ours?
Then time for tea, last minute rehearsals in corridor spaces then to wait as the show started at 6pm. We were timed to perform at about 8.45pm. Walking into the auditorium I noticed that several parents and staff had come over to support us.
The piece itself went exceptionally well with all performers and crew creating as one judge commented ‘a very delicate, sophisticated performance’ which had ‘very clean movement and was well performed’ with ‘good use of solos, duets and group formations’.
All the students involved were a credit to Bingley Grammar school and had an amazing experience performing together.