With Avondale College's musical productions having been cancelled by Covid for the past two years, seeing the cast of This is Us take their final bows on Friday evening was an emotional experience for all involved. Led by Show Director Mrs Erica Norton, Musical Director Dr Julie Garner, Vocal Director Ms Toni Randle, Choreographer Miss Santana Schmidt and Set/Visual Designer Susan Elijas, our students had worked tirelessly to produce a performance of some of the best hits from musical theatre, with great success.
Set against an illustrative 'Avondale' background, each number had a distinctly local feel - from the large ensemble numbers such as a Victorian-inspired 'One Day More' from Les Miserables and Piha beach scene for 'Summer Nights' from Grease, to the more intimate solos - including a beautiful 'Memory' from Cats sung by Patricia Reyes, and the show-stopping 'Maybe This Time' from Cabaret sung by Allegra D'Souza, accompanied by Jakob Elijas and band. The comedic talents of Commedia trio Oscar Shaw, Diego Canelo Sanchez and Leo Taylor skilfully wove energetic humour throughout.
The cast and show band gave it their all in the high-energy 'Mamma Mia' and 'Dancing Queen' numbers from Mamma Mia and had a lot of fun in the truly time-warping 'Time Warp' from The Rocky Horror Picture Show'. The show concluded with a poignant 'This is Us' from The Greatest Showman which featured a celebration of cultural diversity beneath an Avondale College roofline.
"It was amazing to see the talent of our akonga on stage, performing songs that truly showcased their talent," says Show Director, Mrs Erica Norton. "I am incredibly proud and privileged to have been a part of this production season. There is one line from the final song that sums up our amazing students perfectly: "For we are glorious."
Congratulations - and thank you - to all who poured their time, talent and HEART into this show. It was indeed glorious.
Take a 90 second whirlwind tour through the show!