Last Tuesday was the culmination of this term’s Quartz - we performed Sinister Stories to a packed, if somewhat soggy, crowd at the Garden Lane Methodist Church.

We described it as a collage of work to showcase the skills practiced this term. And these young actors did not disappoint.

The show had a number of constituent parts including a section from Shakespeare’s Macbeth (AGH!), a John Cooper Clarke poem, the lyrics to a Phil Collins song translated into German, text from Kneehigh Theatre company, as well as songs, and a section of physical theatre using Frantic Assemblies’ Chair Duets (phew!). On top of this there were monologues and group work written and devised by the young people and all this squeezed into just half an hour!

Due to a trip to A and E for one of the cast, and other commitments (dance competitions, festivals, music exams - a typical weekend for these talented, busy young people) not to mention the near impossible transport situation last week due to the tempestuous weather, it all meant that the show was the first time we had run the whole piece with all the cast members! However they have been developing their skills as ensemble performers and really pulled together as a team. It was particularly lovely for me and Francis to be able to sit back and watch this company of actors grow into an ensemble - listening to each other, performing together and entertaining their audience.

There is of course always more to learn and it is a pleasure to say that these young actors are always up for the challenge, wanting to push themselves, happy to get out of their comfort zones, and to see what they can create.

It was brilliant to be able to share this show with so many friends and family and were delighted to hear the lovely feedback from those attending.

I am consistently heartened and kept on my toes by the energy these young people bring, constantly cheered by their beaming smiles but most of all I am proud of what these young actors have learnt and have proven to me throughout this term and to an attentive audience last night.

As for the change of trousers - well there was a lot of rain yesterday - and I ride a bike. Thankfully trousers dry, because for a good hour or so before rehearsals I was borrowing a pair of Francis’ shorts. We like to coordinate outfits but that was a step too far.