Schools combine to bring Oliver! to Lesmurdie

Performing arts students rehearsing as Fagin and a group of pickpockets for Oliver! at Mazenod College.
Performing arts students rehearsing as Fagin and a group of pickpockets for Oliver! at Mazenod College.

THREE Lesmurdie schools have stepped up to the challenges of revamping the award-winning musical about Oliver Twist at Mazenod College.

The adaptation of the 1960 Broadway musical Oliver! features 55 students from Mazenod College, St Brigid’s College and Lesmurdie Senior High School.

Mazenod College Head of Visual and Performing Arts Beth Parkinson said changes were made for their Tim Burton-inspired production.

“We’ve changed many of the traditional interpretations of the songs and we’ve brought steampunk elements, blending technology and aesthetic design to our costumes and sets,” she said.

Mazenod College has built its own theatre-in-the-round, revolving stage for a 360 degree seating options for the audience, the first school in Western Australia to do so.

Ms Parkinson said the unique staging would be another challenge for the actors to break out of traditional techniques.

“The actors are constantly on the move, twisting, turning and engaging their audience from all angles,” she said.

“Sometimes they have no choice but to have their back to the audience, which is proving challenging to many of them, breaking such a fundamental rule of stage craft.”

THE ESSENTIALS

WHAT: Tim-Burton inspired production of Oliver!

WHERE: Mazenod College Gymnasium on 55 Gladys Rd, Lesmurdie

WHEN: July 20 – 27

TICKETS: www.trybooking.com/book/event?eid=506582