Julius Caesar at the Shakespeare Schools Festival 2024

 

OUR ON STAGE PERFORMANCE ROCKED THE HOUSE

Westlake Primary School took to the stage again this year in a vibrant, colourful, and energetic version of Julius Caesar that we set in an energy company called Power Absolute,  and where Caesar hoped  to become the new CEO.  Things did not go his way!

Thank you to the Fondazione Labia, our primary funder,  for their continued support of our drama programmes  and annual Shakespeare Schools Festival  production  and to the UP Foundation, New York  and Methodical Investment Management, Cape Town, whose support helped with the drama bridging programme, costumes,  refreshments and transport. Without this support and the incredible school  – kids, teachers,  and principal we work with, this could not happen.

Here is a taste of our production – Image Credit A Gorman Photography

 

 

 

 

Kicking Off Community Projects in 2024

A NEW FUNDING PARTNER ON BOARD IN 2024

 

 

 

 

We are thrilled to be working with the good folks at UP, who recognise the work we do through the medium of  the dramatic arts. UP is currently assisting us with three new projects in 2024.

Jerry Posman is the founder and current CEO of the UP project – Unleashing Potential (UP) – and has enoyed a meaningful career in education, focussing on upliftment, growth, and entrepreneurial development in marginalised  communities. We are extremely happy to  have  Jerry and Mel on board with us as we launch  these pilot projects.

Grassdale High, Grassy Park – Extramural drama classes, supporting the existing performing arts programme (dance)

Finding our voices, our unique talents through drama skills training.

Sisonke Youth Performing Arts Programme, Westlake Community – In partnership with  the Westlake United Church Trust and The Dance Project

Sisonke Youth Group – Dance/Drama Expression Session

The Hilltoppers Seniors  Club, Westlake Community.  

As part of learning new skills with  the Santa Senior Shoebox Project, these seniors enjoy theatre fun and games with us. There is no age restriction on playing, learning, and having fun.

In the Community Hall in Westlake.  (photo credit: A Gorman Photography)

Circle Productions will be adding other communities/projects/opportunities in the latter half of the year. We love to see the enjoyment, personal growth and upliftment that programmes like ours bring to young and old.

 

Love Letters – 1 – 3 February 2024 at the Masque Theatre, Muizenberg

Love Letters by A R Gurney is a beautiful play which is nostalgic, funny, and moving.

The play was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize and has been performed on Broadway and on the West End and in other cities with an array of brilliant actors playing Andy and Melissa.

The timing of this production could not be better as we kick off the month of Love.

The company comprises seasoned actors David Muller and Suzi Gehr with direction by Celia Musikanth.

Sit back and let the beautiful words of Love Letters wash over you.

 

 

2023 Westlake Primary Certificate party

 

This is such a happy occasion as we award our drama  kids with their Circle Production Certificates and the Certificates from the Shakespeare Schools Festival.

At our Certificate Hand Over party 19 September, Tracey Petersen, Principal of Westlake Primary School    and Mia Rogers representing the Fondazione Labia, handed out the Certificates.  A certificate from the Shakespeare Schools Festival  was also handed out. The children were excited to get both!

We love these children and cant wait to get started again at this extraordinary school. These pics are courtesy A Gorman Photography

Papama, Celia, Coleen, Anele at the Awards Party
Tracey and Mia – Certificates Handover to Liqhame

Shakespeare Schools Festival Cape Town 2023

A Memorable Production in 2023

Westlake Primary’s third appearance at the Shakespeare Schools Festival was a huge success.  Our drama kids enjoyed showing off their skills – all that they had learned on our drama programme Jan – May 2023.

These 11- and 12-year olds took on “The Seven Ages of Man”, a speech from As You Like It – and relished bringing some local flavour, lingo and dance moves to their interpretation.

A special treat was having 6 past learners from Westlake Primary join us in a guest appearance segment of our production.

It was a special journey for all of us and we say a huge thank you again to the Fondazione Labia and Westlake Primary School for sharing the vision.

In the end,  however,  it is all about the learners.  Thank you!   You were incredible.

As WE Like It – Shakespeare Schools Festival 2023
(Credit:  A Gorman Photography)

WATCH OUR VIDEO – Tony Mittelmeyer videographer.  The first few seconds the stage is dark. Don’t panic you have not lost the image, it is intentional.   Enjoy.

Westlake Primary Back on the Boards for the SSF 2023

CELEBRATING THE BARD AGAIN

We are so excited to be back at Westlake Primary working with a group of Grade 6 and 7 learners again.  Some familiar faces from last year who enjoyed their first experience of a “real  theatre” when we took Romeo and Juliet to the Baxter.

AND NOW FOR SOMETHING COMPLETELY DIFFERENT

Our third production for the Shakespeare Schools Festival with our Westlake drama group is something quite different.  We are presenting Jacques’ speech – the Seven Ages of Man – from As You Like It and like our past productions are making it accessible, colourful, relatable,  and local.

WHAT WE LEARN IN DRAMA CLASS WE TAKE TO THE STAGE

We include various snippets of Shakespeare’s plays and sonnets to depict the ages and use clever set pieces and simple props to describe those ages.  We sing, we dance, we narrate, we mime, we act, we love and we enjoy.   As WE like it.

We perform at the Star Theatre – Homecoming Centre, District Six, Cape Town city centre at the end of May.  Watch this space for updates.

Celebrating the Westlake Drama Kids 2022

Certificate Party

Westlake Primary is a forward-thinking, energetic and committed school in the heart of the Westlake community.   We are so blessed to have worked with the school and the Labia Foundation since 2019,  with a Covid-19 break in 2020.

We celebrated the achievement of our 2022 drama kids with the awarding of their certificates on Wednesday 9th November and as in past years, the afternoon was an exciting and fond reunion.

The group  delighted in quoting their favourite lines from Romeo and Juliet, our production for  SSF 2022.  Those who are returning next year in Grade 7 are looking forward to being part of our group again.  We are just as excited and we will also be taking some new learners on the journey with us.

Photos Taken by A Gorman Photography Say it All

Some of the kids clung to their certificates – others chose Jazz hands!

Mia Rogers of the Labia Foundation with Tracey Petersen, Principal of Westlake Primary hand over the Certificate to Lukhanyo.

Anda (Juliet) and Okuhle (Romeo) with Celia and Coleen. A special moment.
Okuhle, Blessings and Anda sharing the joy.

 

 

 

 

 

 

November Fun for Seniors

The Best Fun in Town!

A group of energetic and very “young at heart” seniors joined us for a 60-minute session of short, lively and varied activities.   Everyone had a chance to find their creativity by expressing themselves  through words, mime, and body language.   Together, we teased our imaginations, played with voice and character and discovered just how energizing and self-affirming a series of simple acting games can be.

This is a wonderful activity for those who love words, theatre, self-expression, and a bit of something different…….oh, and lots of laughter.

Enjoyable Moments

A Hat and Some Attitude Gets you a Cowboy and a Willing Dance Partner

 

Cello, Cymbal, Piano and Drums in a Mimed Orchestra Piece.

Shakespeare Schools Festival 2022

WE DID IT!

Bigger, bolder, brighter is the way to describe the production of Romeo and Juliet  that our Westlake Primary School drama kids presented at the Shakespeare Schools Festival.

With generous sponsorship from the Fondazione Labia (third year), we were able to take 15 learners through an intense programme of auditions, casting, acting games and  exercises.  Teaching story telling techniques, voice production and dance we brought a contemporary, re-worked tale of the star-crossed lovers.

The cherry on the top was the performance on August 10th at the Baxter Theatre.  We went from a large school hall onto a  real stage.  There was a lot of  excitement in the dressing rooms,  joyful wonder at the effect of added  lighting and sound, and the joy of  performing for an audience.

Bring on 2023

All images of the show A Gorman Photography    For more images visit our Facebook Page.

Let the Street Dance Begin!
Balcony Scene

 

Diego’s Journey with Circle Productions

Diego Cornelius joined our Drama Kids Extramural Programme in 2019.  With the support of the Fondazione Labia,  Circle Productions has run a part time programme at the Westlake Primary School with Grade 6 and 7 learners.

In 2021, six of our kids auditioned for the Waterfront Theatre School’s Junior Programme (Recreational).  All six were accepted and they were generously sponsored by the Fondazione Labia and the Waterfront Theatre School.   They finish in 2022.   Diego’s is just one of many wonderful  journeys that were kickstarted in 2019.

Big Thanks to Fondazione Labia,  Westlake Primary, Shakespeare Schools Festival and the Waterfront Theatre School.

DIEGO’S JOURNEY IN PICTURES

  • Diego at Casa Labia 2019
  • Diego – Comedy through Mime – 2019 Westlake Primary Showcase
  • Westlake Drama Kids with Coleen and Celia 2019
  • Shakespeare Schools Festival 2021 – Julius Caesar
  • The Waterfront Theatre School Auditions 2021 – Diego has shot up!
  • Waterfront Theatre School in class 2022 – Diego in red blazer

Photo Credit:  A Gorman Photography