“Acting…must aim to lift life up to a higher level of meaning
and not tear it down or demean it. The actor’s search is a generous
quest for that larger meaning.” – Stella Adler
Drama Ensembles meet one morning per week for each of the Years 7 to 10 groups. Peripatetic tutors take the ensembles which are dedicated to performance and lead to public performance toward the end of each semester. Their content is determined by the girls’ own interests and range from quality prewritten texts to self-devised works.
As part of a long-standing and evolving tradition, each year the College produces a major work for which students from any Year are eligible to audition. In an especially demanding schedule, it begins preproduction in either Term 2 or Term 3 of one year and is realised in Term 1 of the following year. Every second year this production is a musical, which is most often a co-production with St Augustine’s College. Past performances have included:
- Guys and Dolls
- Thoroughly Modern Millie
- Our Town
- Romeo and Juliet
- In the Heights
Rough Hewn Theatre Troupe
“Begun in 2007 as an initiative of then head of Drama, Mr Ken Granneman and Principal, Mr Kerry Stirling, the Rough Hewn Theatre Troupe was originally to be called Manly Youth Theatre, a company to serve the theatre aspirations of young people on the Northern Beaches who wanted the theatre to figure in some way in their professional lives. It was to be dedicated to performance and to develop in whatever direction it might lead and into whatever form it might take. It was an open and generous brief.
After a public call for auditions, the company of ten young people was formed and the name changed to deflect the notion that ‘we might be doing plays for children’. The new name comes from Shakespeare’s play, Hamlet where Hamlet says to his friend and colleague Horatio, “There’s a divinity that shapes our ends, rough hew them how we will”. The company felt that it would do the rough hewing, the rehearsing and the figuring and ‘art’ would be that divinity over which it had no control beyond doing the best job it could.
Beginning with a self-devised work, Look! Out there beyond the waves!, the Hoons (as its members are affectionately known) have over the years performed in, or directed or designed works by Dario Fo, Shakespeare, Racine, Edward Albee, Ray Mathew, Moliere, Timberlake Wertenbaker, Tom Stoppard, Dylan Thomas, Anthony Burgess, Noel Coward, Jones and Schmitt and August Strindberg.
The company comes and goes and many of our alumni are now competing professional actors, having studied at The Actors Centre Academy, The National Institute of Dramatic Art (NIDA), Victorian College of the Arts (VCA), The Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts (WAAPA), Italia Conti and the Central School of Speech and Drama (both in London) and Ecole Internationale de Theatre Jacques Lecoq in Paris. Others have trained to be Drama teachers currently working in secondary schools.