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Classics Production Review

February was the month for the 4th annual Classics drama production and this year they performed Euripides’ tragedy, ‘Iphigenia at Aulis’. Almost 90 people attended over the two nights, making this the most successful production to date though numbers may have been boosted by the appearance of world-renowned classicist, Professor Edith Hall from King’s College, London, who delivered a wonderful introductory talk based on the play. Edith was also joined by Dr Rosie Wyles from the University of Kent but the rather formidable front row did nothing to daunt the spirit of the cast and they delivered a powerful and highly-charged performance that left most of the audience speechless. Our own 6th form Student Support Manager, Natasha Thompson, said she felt ‘emotionally exhausted’ by the end of the play and Deputy Head, Jamie MacLean, cited it as the best production he had ever seen on a school stage. For some of the cast, this was their first experience of live theatre but no-one would have guessed as they delivered their lines with passion, accuracy and fluency. It was a real team effort and lighting, costumes, artwork were all handled and managed by our students.

Edith Hall commented afterwards, ‘ It was a truly exceptional performance at any level, especially from actors so young. Very emotionally committed and real sense of the poetry in delivery. Many, many congratulations to all concerned’.

Dr. Rosie Wyles, a regular visitor to NKS productions and a good friend to our Classics department said afterwards, ‘…your pupils are inspirational. It's been an absolute highlight of my past few years at Kent to have the privilege of seeing you and your talented pupils bring Classics to life’.

Edith Hall is about to embark on a nationwide initiative, funded by the arts council, to promote the teaching of Classical Civilisation in state schools. Head of Classics, Paul Found, is a member of the advisory committee for this initiative following an invite to King’s College to discuss the introduction and subsequent growth and success of Classical Civilisation at NKS. Our Classics numbers are steadily growing every year and the Norton Knatchbull School is very pleased to be at the forefront of this campaign. Associated events are at the planning stage and NKS is expecting to play host to one of these occasions; watch this space!

A sincere ‘thank you’ to everyone who supported this year’s production and for your continued support for our students throughout the year.

- Mr P. Found, Head of Classics

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