There was a wealth of young talent on display on Friday night in Dorchester at the Thomas Hardye School year 12 variety show.
Two teams of performers were given the challenge to produce an evening of entertainment, to raise funds for the next Rock Challenge competition, with the Blue team plumping for the theme ‘A Night at the Movies’ and the Pink team choosing to perform ‘A Night Through the Decades’. Each side was given a budget and had to source all of the material, performers and everything else that makes up a professional theatrical production.
The Blues were first up with a feast of film fun and opened the show with a rousing dance routine to the Austin Powers theme tune. Thomas Bastian made a dapper Austin Powers, while the rest of the company energetically supported him with some psychedelic verve.
There were some other remarkable ensemble numbers later in the programme too, with performances to tracks including ‘Lady Marmalade’ from Moulin Rouge and ‘The Hanging Tree’ from The Hunger Games, both boasting extremely impressive choreography by Zoe Cochrane and Steph Wright.
Comedy was provided by some hilarious home movies and affectionate parodies of The Chariots of Fire and Shrek, with the small cast proving they were all versatile performers.
Other highlights included ‘How far I’ll Go’ from Disney’s Moana – sung beautifully by Georgie Harwood, with Jenna Taylor providing a graceful dance accompaniment – and a wonderfully executed tap dance to ‘Hot Honey Rag’ from Chicago.
Audiences were then transported back in time by the Pink team for Act two with a much more vaudevillian style show.
They were first entertained by some impressive singing from Susie Kibuga, accompanied by virtuoso pianist Elliot Warburton, before being astounded by some intricate card tricks.
There were some sensational dance numbers including a tap routine to the classic ‘Putting on the Ritz’ and to the rocking ‘Hot Patootie, as well as a hugely impressive mime by a group called Panic Button.
It was additionally a real treat to hear the Les Misérables classic ‘On my Own’ sung with the original French lyrics by Carys Evans, who showed an enormous amount of confidence by taking to the stage and performing entirely unaccompanied.
All in all this was an extremely well performed and executed evening of entertainment, which as the students go into their final year of studies, bodes well for them to have a future in the performing arts.