Paignton Academy's Spectacular 'Matilda' Production Takes Centre Stage

News Desk
Authored by News Desk
Posted: Monday, April 1, 2024 - 15:19

Paignton Academy's rendition of "Matilda, The Musical Jr." has seized the spotlight with an awe-inspiring display of talent and collaboration, earning praise from everyone including MP, Kevin Foster, and local primary school children.

Featuring a cast and crew of over 80 students in years 7 to 11, the production has captivated audiences and left a lasting impressionon all who attended.

The abundance of talent displayed during auditions prompted the director to assemble two casts, reflecting the enthusiasm and involvement of the students at Paignton Academy, all eager to bring Roald Dahl's beloved story to life. 

From the outset, it was clear that this production would be a collaborative effort, with students and staff alike pouring their hearts into rehearsals in the months leading up to the performances.

The production was not just a showcase of talent but also a celebration of the school's ethos and values. Ambition, love of learning, pride in one's work, and a commitment to excellence were recognisable throughout every aspect of the performance. 

Keira Duffin, school director of the show reflected: "It has been an absolute pleasure and honour to be the director of Matilda the Musical. The level of talent from every student on and off stage has been a joy to watch and rehearse with. I am the proudest director, and I cannot wait for the next show already.”

 The three-day performance schedule, which included daytime shows for local primary schools, provided an opportunity for the younger members of the community to witness the magic of live theatre, but also served as a glimpse into secondary school life, offering them invaluable exposure and opportunities within performing arts. Among the attendees were students from Thinking Schools Academy Trust, including Curledge Street Academy and Kings Ash Academy.

In addition to the daytime shows, three evening performances attracted the public, further engaging audiences of all ages in the magic of "Matilda, The Musical Jr." Among the guests was the local Member of Parliament, Kevin Foster, who attended one of the evening shows and commended the students for their dedication and talent.

Kevin Foster, MP for Torbay said: “It was a great show. It is always wonderful to see young people getting up on stage and discovering something about themselves that they might not have known before. It is absolutely right to put on this type of production to help young people express their creative talent in a way that differs from reading a book or being in a classroom that would not have the same effect.”

 As the final curtain fell on this unforgettable production, "Matilda, The Musical Jr." at Paignton Academy served as a powerful reminder of the transformative power of the arts and the importance of unity in achieving excellence.

Derwyn Williams, Principal at Paignton Academy echoed this sentiment: “These students represent the best in our school community and the wider Paignton community. They truly live and breathe our schools' values.

“Our production of 'Matilda, The Musical Jr.' exemplifies the strength that comes from working together. It reflects the outstanding relationships and character development that define our school. We want to ensure that when our students look back in years to come things like this – genuinely, memorable enjoyable experiences that all schools should offer young people in the country.”