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A storming performance: The Tempest

Scene of the tempest on stage

It's official, CLSG productions are back with a bang! And a crash, and wallop.. and that's just the shipwreck scene. Well done to both casts for four days of wonderful theatre. And what a nice touch that the past really was prologue: audiences enjoyed a screening of our 'making of' documentary on their way in.

For those who don't know, The Tempest is Shakespeare's last solo play, produced eight years after the death of Elizabeth 1 in 1611. It is a rip-roaring adventure that along the way tackles themes of magic, revenge, love, and eventual forgiveness, all set against the backdrop of Italian nobility. In our production the familiar character of Prospero became Prospera to reflect its all-female cast, and not one but two fantastic casts approached the famous story, performing on alternate nights to give unique performances on the same stage.

It has been an honour and a privilege for me to witness the technical and design teams, and the two casts, rise magnificently to the occasion of our first live major school production in over two years. Their professionalism, their commitment, their support for one another, their appreciation of Shakespeare; I couldn't have asked for more. Thank you to parents, teachers, students, the organisational brilliance of Natasha and Julie from the friends, the head girl team, the alumnae - it's been a team effort! Our revels now are ended. These our actors, as I foretold you, were all spirits, and are melted into air, into thin air...

Chris Whyld, Director of Drama

Playing Prospera in The Tempest has been an absolute honour and pleasure—the rehearsal process as a whole has been incredibly enjoyable, and it was interesting to see the progression from online rehearsals last year during lockdown, to being in person on stage. Exploring such a contradictory character was a welcome challenge, and although memorising Shakespeare is tricky, the difference in language to that of modern English is an exciting aspect of the performance that was a joy to experiment with. Having two casts allowed each actor to witness a unique interpretation of their character, and this allowed us all to enhance our own performances by taking inspiration from our peers.

Kayla (who plays Prospera)