Following 3 months of preparation，the English musical drama Peter Pan was performed on 5/6/7 Dec by 43 HD Primary students. The excellent performance received great praise from the audience.
Peter Pan, a symbol of eternal childhood and an adventurous spirit is an idol for many children. The director of Peter Pan, Jacqui Coogan said, “We chose Peter Pan because it is a well-known story and it has a lot of visual excitement and interesting characters such as pirates, lost boys and Indian Braves. When English is a second language to the actors and audience it really helps if you can choose a story that is accessible to all. ”
Over the last three months, all the actors rehearsed twice per week after school. They had to repeat all the lines, songs and dances again and again.
Jacqui Coogan said, “As a director, you can feel like your work is never finished and it can always be better. However, these children always amaze me with what they can do. They are a group of 9-11 year olds with English as a second language and they can listen to direction and instructions all in English without translation and perform to a very high standard. Our students are fantastic.”
Everyone was proud of the actors when the musical drama finished. “To perform in front of nearly 1000 people at this age also shows an outstanding confidence in themselves.” The producer Allan Marsden said.
Graham Horton, the Principal of the Primary School said, “The performance of Peter Pan by the Primary School students was outstanding. The children performed to an extremely high standard and demonstrated just how effective our English programme is here at HD Ningbo. There were stand out performances by the young actors who played Captain Hook and by Peter Pan and Wendy.
Drama productions such as this rely on the passion and dedication of the staff team. The production was led by our expert producers Jacqui and Allan but they were magnificently supported by Afra and Joel our two music leaders and Michelle Lynn Vannoy and Hannah Proffitt the choreography team. Other members of the Primary and Secondary teaching teams helped with lighting and sound, props, scenery and music. It was a great HD Ningbo Team effort and I am very proud of the result.”
“These primary students are amazing. Their professional performance reflected the successful education they receive at HD,” the audience said excitedly.
The music, the props, the stage set-up and the acting were of the highest standard, and it was the teachers themselves who were behind the scenes making this amazing show possible for our parents and students. Peter Pan also showcased the seamless collaboration between the academic and non-academic teams, and between the international and Chinese teams.
The Primary School drama productions at HD Ningbo are becoming an important part of the International Programme. They allow children to develop and use a wide English vocabulary and to showcase their spoken language to great effect. The actors become much more confident through the use of drama. Our link with Hurtwood House, one of the UK’s leading Performing Arts Schools enables us to showcase and prioritise these activities and we are very grateful for their expert support and guidance. So the English musical drama will continue to be a feature of HD School.