Last Friday, just a week after the school’s centenary commemorations of the Armistice and beneath the new memorial wall in the Concert Hall, the boys of 8D performed an anthology of work to commemorate the First World War, focusing on the morale and humanity of those in the trenches. Having worked with Mr Sperring, our Director or Drama, for two weeks, the boys directed, conceptualised and performed in the piece, taking the lead in a stunning piece of artwork. Featuring performances from Journey’s End, Blackadder Goes Forth, poetry from Siegfried Sassoon, Marjorie Pickthall, Rudyard Kipling and Wilfred Owen and a touching rendition of Carol Ann Duffy’s “A Wound In Time”, the evening was an emotional reflection on the effects of war, and a fitting memorial for the centenary year.
The play elegantly summarised the amazing opportunity that a Dulwich Prep London education represents to any boy. The play was produced quickly yet it was very powerful with pain, pathos and humour in equal measure that could not fail to impress upon both players and audience the horrors of war. The boys should all be able to write about WW1 and war generally with a depth of understanding that would be hard to gain any other way. They all came out on a “high”, full of confidence and enthusiasm having achieved something they were initially very doubtful about – and that is real learning.