Friday 26th November saw the boys of 8D perform an anthology based on the topic of “Outsiders”. Spending two weeks with our Director of Drama, Mr Sperring, the boys explored many mature and sensitive topics with regards to societies’ outsiders – be they refugees, social outcasts, victims of prejudice, or simply people who were not part of ‘the norm’. The boys’ careful consideration of the topics yielded a beautiful evening full of emotion; from poetry such as Benjamin Zephaniah’s “We Refugees” which discussed the nature of those seeking refuge and was performed as a class ensemble, all the way to the GCSE and A-Level text “The Crucible” by Arthur Miller, which saw the entire group explore the nature of vindication and mud-slinging against the backdrop of the Salem witch trials and McCarthyism.
The boys’ professionalism and emotional awareness was also demonstrated in pieces such as “The Day The War Came” by Nicola Davies, the entirety of Act 4 Scene 1 of “The Merchant of Venice” (which was performed in the original, uncut Shakespearean language), and an excerpt from Stephen Sondheim’s “Assassins”. Juxtaposed to this were lighter pieces, including Monty Python’s “Life Of Brian” (“he’s not the Messiah, he’s a very naughty boy!”) and a beautiful rendition of The Little Mermaid’s “Part Of Your World” which saw the entire group take individual solos and show off their musical talents as well as theatrical talents.
With every aspect of the show – including the striking design of a half-black, half-white set separated by a wall of chairs to show the struggle between those inside and those outside – designed by the boys, this was a truly exceptional experience which fully justified the standing ovation and minute-long round of applause from the appreciative audience at the end.