Junior and Senior pupils take to the stage
It has been a busy Michaelmas Term for Co-Curricular Drama with a double-bill which has seen Faulkner’s and Shell pupils collaborate on the first ever Bradfield College Junior play while Fifth and Sixth Form pupils combined for a Senior play.
A rotating cast of principal actors took to the stage across four performances in the Old Gym as the younger years showcased their talents in Georgia Christou’s Bright. Young. Things. which is based around a fictional game show for youths. The concept of competition between youngsters is one that has been present since day one and is a divisive belief at the best of times. Competition can be seen as, and is, in most cases, a healthy way of showing achievement, rewarding hard work and celebrating dedication to something you love. However, it can be taken too far and people can lose sight of the overall goal. Bright. Young. Things. serves to show that people can learn from an experience, regardless of the final outcome.
Our Senior pupils followed up by staging an experimental take on Sarah Kane’s beautiful, poetic, raw and unflinching play 4:48 Psychosis. With a script featuring no character names or stage directions, just 34 pages of continuous text, that looks, feels and reads like a long form poem, 4:48 Psychosis is undoubtedly a challenging production and one of the most ‘adult’ plays ever staged at Bradfield. Indeed, understanding the world through a lens other than one’s own is a central pillar of Bradfield’s commitment to being a ‘Talking School’, one which engages pupils and staff in important conversations over issues such as mental health.
With many ways to interpret the material, cast and directorial team created a spine for the production – the story of The Patient, played by Ginny (M), and The Doctor, played by Jackson (A), around which floated the patient’s thoughts, hopes, desires, anxieties and demons. Audience members were free to stand in any area of the Old Gym either by the central bedsit of the patient or by any one of the actors playing her thoughts in a truly immersive and powerful staging.