The Shakespeare Globe Centre New Zealand University of Otago Sheilah Winn Shakespeare Festival of 2023.

Logan Park did exceptionally well at this year’s festival.

Our regional round was held at King’s and Queen’s Performing Arts Centre in March. We had two very well received pieces. The first was a student directed piece from Much Ado About Nothing, directed and performed by Emma Bradfield, Bram Casey, Hugo Todd, Eve Cowperthwaite, Bella Gascoyne and Nicholas Cranefield. They gave a lovely performance which the judges called elegant, stylish and clever and our own Ms Mouat called mature, intelligent and engaging. The second piece was a scene from A Midsummer Night’s Dream, directed by Ms Colbert and performed by Jimmy Muir, Bruno McMillan, Nisha Tilyard, Sophie Chettleburgh, Rowan Metreyeon and Emily Bendall. Rowan Metreyeon won a Notable Performance Award and Jimmy Muir won the Outstanding Stage Performance Award and the piece won the Otago regional Best Teacher Directed 15 Minute Scene which meant the group got through to the National Festival in Wellington.

The Midsummer group took a 6:00am flight up to Wellington for the Festival over King’s Birthday Weekend. As well as participating in excellent workshops and other festival activities, we got to do a little sightseeing. We had a tour of Government House, where we met Dame Cindy Kiro’s dog, went to Te Papa, the Botanical Gardens and got a sunny afternoon to walk around the city. We were also hosted at Parliament by Grant Robertson for a discussion with the Festival assessors and judges.

The group gave a brilliant performance at the gorgeous St James Theatre and brought the house down. They were awarded three top prizes: Outstanding Presentation of a Comedy, Best Communication with the Audience Award and Best Connection with the Audience Award and Jimmy Muir won two individual prizes: Outstanding individual Comic Role Award and a NSSP Selector Special Award for Professional Excellence.

Sharing the news with Ms Mouat on the night and her excitement and enthusiastic support is a lovely memory.

There will be another opportunity to see this hilarious piece. They will be performing at the University of Otago for Allen Hall’s Lunchtime Theatre on 27 July at 1:00, along with award winning scenes from Taieri College and Columba College.

Four members of the group, Sophie Chettleburgh, Bruno McMillan, Rowan Metreyeon and Jimmy Muir, have since been selected for the National Shakespeare Schools Production, a week-long intensive of workshops and rehearsals, ending in a public performance, taking place in Wellington. Participants will also be considered for the SGCNZ Young Shakespeare Company to travel to the UK and perform at the Globe in London.

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