Welcome family and friends to the major performance for XtrAct’s secondary students. We have two secondary classes comprising of students between the ages of 12 and 18 years of age. For some, this will be their first time onstage and for others, well, they have probably lost count.
Some of our students have had the opportunity to perform with local, Newcastle or Sydney theatre companies, which provides them with invaluable experience of the inner workings of the industry. However, the drama class provides these kids with something the theatre companies can ill afford: Time and permission.
Time to learn and practise the individual skills of acting, communication, team work, and focus. Time to find their voice and listen to the voices of others. The drama class takes time to foster interpersonal relations between kids from very different backgrounds and ages, and encourages positive, supportive and constructive relationships. There is time to explore our creativity and build confidence in sharing our creative thoughts and ideas with others.
None of this time would be any good to the children without permission. In a drama class we offer students permission to GET IT WRONG. It is a safe space for kids to try ideas and make mistakes without fear of judgement and ridicule. And in an age where anxiety and resilience are a core concern for educators, training kids to be okay about making a mistake is extremely important. It’s one of the reasons I love teaching drama.
I would like to welcome XtrAct founders Robyn Weidlich, Pollyanna Forshaw and Pam Campbell to our audience tonight. Your support for young people in theatre on the Coast is invaluable, and XtrAct stands as a great legacy to you all.
Thank you also to our XtrAct parents and guardians for supporting your child’s passion for performing. Getting them to class, organising costumes, helping the kids learn their lines, understanding how much the entire class relies on each member to play their part for the success of the performance, coming along to our performances… every little bit adds to the success of their time with XtrAct.
So please, sit back and enjoy your children as they take their next step in learning about the craft of theatre.
Chookas, Danielle Brame Whiting