The Year 5 and 6 pupils "wowed"audiences during two performances of Hairspray Jr. this week.
The swinging sixties landed at Greenfield School for the Year 5 and 6 pupils’ performance of Hairspray Jr. this week. The play is adapted from the hit 2007 film version of the well-loved tale of acceptance and integration in 1960s Baltimore, and the pupils in Year 6 have been learning about the themes covered in the play throughout this term. Deputy Head Mr Brown commented, “Our Hairspray production has produced some wonderful learning opportunities for Year 6 in the lead up to the performances. We have been immensely impressed with the maturity the children have shown when discussing the Civil Rights Movement, Martin Luther King, segregation and equality. Year 6 have shown a great deal of empathy when discussing the plight of people like Rosa Parks and Nelson Mandela, and have linked the inequality black people have suffered throughout the world to those who battle an ongoing fight for fairness and equality in other sections of today’s society. It is abundantly clear that Year 6 leave us as principled, fair-minded and well-rounded young people. We are incredibly proud of them and are excited to see what becomes of them in the future.”
The play has been a wonderful opportunity for the Year 6 class of 24 pupils to round off what has been a truly exceptional year. This January, after months of hard work and preparation towards their entrance exams, each pupil sat challenging papers in Mathematics, English and Verbal Reasoning at their shortlisted choice of senior schools, with spectacular results. Many of the schools were heavily over-subscribed, in some cases more than 400 children applied for fewer than 100 places, and so the competition for places was extremely high. With the support of their class teacher and Head of Curriculum, Mrs Maher, the 24 boys and girls at Greenfield have excelled themselves. Multiple offers were received and all 24 pupils secured a place to one of their chosen senior schools. In addition, 23 scholarships were offered to our pupils for their abilities in academics, music, art, drama, sport and all-round excellence.
The large stage, hand-painted set and medley of A-line skirts, ankle socks and big wigs helped to bring 1960s Baltimore to Woking in full technicolour. With the help of many members of staff and parents, the performances have been supported by fabulous costumes, make-up, lighting and props, and the overall production was said to be School’s best yet. Mrs Maher said, “The children in Years 5 and 6 always look forward to the end of year production and we have been amazed by the standard that these children have achieved in such a short space of time. They have astounded me.” Head Girl, Ruby Skilbeck, received Music Scholarship offers from St Catherine’s Bramley, Tormead and Farnborough Hill for her outstanding ability in the subject and Head Boy, Benjamin Edwards, also received Music Scholarship offers to RGS Guildford and Reed’s School. In the production, Ruby shared the leading role of Tracy Turnblad and Ben brought to life to Motormouth Maybelle in a show that the audience will never forget! Tilly Ludlam portrayed Tracy’s nemesis, Amber, with exceptional flair; Tilly will be joining St Teresa’s School in Effingham as a Drama Scholar in September. James Burfield, who shared the role of Link in the two performances, will be taking up a scholarship for his talents in Drama, Music and Sport at St John’s School in Leatherhead, as one of their first ever Year 7 pupils in September. The Hairspray Jr. performances have certainly given the pupils a taste of what is to come when they join their senior schools. Tilly says, “It has been hard at times to learn our lines but it was very enjoyable and it is definitely something I am going to continue with at senior school. I love being up on the stage and performing.”