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AN INNOVATIVE AUDITION-based drama,
dance, vocal and instrumental program
was launched by Director of Schools Ray
Collins at San Clemente High School,
Mayfield on 9 November. ASPIRE seeks to
provide students with high quality musical,
dramatic and dance training and in doing
so, raise the profile of Catholic schools in
the performing arts.
"The ASPIRE program is something that is
very close to my heart and as the name
suggests, we are seeking something more
and aiming high," he said.
"The successful students from Years
5-12 will have the unique opportunity to
participate in studio practice, workshops,
advanced skill development, networking
and teamwork in a supportive environment."
The occasion of the launch of ASPIRE
was itself an exercise in creativity, with
the event enhanced by its setting. A red
carpet entrance created anticipation and
those who attended were not disappointed.
Special guests included folk country
artist Bob Corbett, ABC Newcastle's
Cover Loving Choir winner St Mary's
e, Madelaine Nunn, Craig Wattam, Ray Collins and dancer
urke-Low of St Joseph s Taree.
to develop, create,
Opportunity is knocking for many students of Catholic schools
across the Hunter as a bold new performing arts program begins.
By TRACEY EDSTEIN
(l-r) Grace Avery, Olivia Duncan, Kaitlynd Reiher-
Smith and Caitlin Pierson of St Paul s Booragul.
Dominic Lacey of St Catherine s Singleton.
Director of Schools Ray Collins.
Laura Chapman of
St John s Lambton.
Gateshead and San Clemente's nationally
acclaimed cheerleaders. Mistress of
Ceremonies Madelaine Nunn, looking
decidedly thespian, spoke of the key role
performance and creativity have played
in her life, particularly as a student at
St Francis Xavier's College and now as
she's preparing to audition for the world
renowned National Institute of Dramatic
Arts. She welcomed the ASPIRE program
and describes it as "a catalyst for dreams
to come true".
Chair of the ASPIRE Committee Craig
Wattam said, "I am confident that the
students involved will deliver no less
than excellence and I look forward to
working with our Artistic Director and
diocesan personnel to combine all four
ensembles under one dramatic theme
for a high quality performance each year,
commencing in Term 3 next year."
The variety of students showcasing their
talent at the ASPIRE launch -- guitarists
and pianists, vocalists, dancers and
dramatists -- provided just a glimpse of
what the initiative promises. Watch this
Members of San Clemente s Cheerleading Squad.
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