Studio Theatre was filled with students, parents and staff for not one, but two performances in September as Drama Scholars showcased their projects for Michaelmas term. From a historical musical to a play which explored female self-discovery, Upper Sixth students Grace, Megan and Peony reflect on their journeys that led to their final devised pieces. Watch Theodora and Her and I below.
‘When I received my letter saying I’d received a drama scholarship I only had one thought: that my Scholars’ Project was going to be the musical extravaganza I’d always dreamed of putting on. It still feels very surreal that I’ve written my own musical which I get the privilege to perform.
I wanted to create a musical that celebrated someone forgotten in history, and when I discovered Theodora I fell in love with her and her story. What followed was an immense sense of pressure to give her the memory she deserves and so I hope people enjoyed the show and left feeling as if they know a little more about another incredible woman.
The story is set across the 1st century AD after the fall of the Western half of the Roman Empire in what is better known as the Byzantine Empire. The empire bordered nearly all of the Mediterranean Sea. Territory conquering came hand-in-hand with advancements in the legal system such as the Corpus Juris Civilis, Jusitinian’s legal code which gave birth to the modern legal system. While their society was rather modern for the time women still did not have equal rights, with their choices limited within society. Although there was one woman who was slightly different.’
‘We were so grateful for the opportunity to be able to deepen our passion for creating theatre, and explore the themes of our play in a safe and non-judgemental environment. We thoroughly enjoyed every aspect of the creative process – from finding inspiration in poetry, to the choreography, scriptwriting, designing and directing of the piece. It was a very valuable experience we have learned a great deal from.
Her and I has been a long time in the making, and we have loved watching it evolve and progress into something we are very proud of, developing a deep connection towards it. We hope that viewers will be able to resonate with the main character as she deals with the ups and downs of life as she embarks on a journey of self-discovery, accompanied by her inner child.
Despite encountering challenges during the process, we found it to be very therapeutic to transfer our personal experiences to this piece. As this has been such an intimate project, we have found it has brought us closer together as theatre makers but above all as friends.’
Megan (U6F) and Peony (U6D)