Drama academy notches up 20 years in Manawatu

The Tribune (NZ) - - LEARNING FOR LIFE 2016 -

He­len O’Grady Drama Academy is so proud to have just com­pleted its 20th year in Manawatu and prin­ci­pal Sophia Parker is still pas­sion­ate about go­ing to work ev­ery day.

The He­len O’Grady Drama Academy is all about giv­ing chil­dren self con­fi­dence to suc­ceed in life. ‘‘In say­ing that, there are plenty of drama kings and queens that come to our classes,’’ says Sophia. She loves to de­velop her stu­dents fur­ther within the per­form­ing arts if they show that in­ter­est. Through­out the pro­gramme, there is speech work, mu­sic through move­ment and weekly plays.

The pro­gramme is all about life skills. To­day’s chil­dren are con­stantly in front of screens with com­put­ers and tex­ting.

Sophia be­lieves it is vi­tal chil­dren are given the op­por­tu­nity to learn how im­por­tant clear and con­fi­dent com­mu­ni­ca­tion is.

‘‘We aim to de­velop a new gen­er­a­tion of lead­ers. It is the con­fi­dent child who does well at school, creates strong friend­ships, au­di­tions for roles or tries out for the sports team and feels pre­pared for a job in­ter­view. It is the con­fi­dent child who makes a dif­fer­ence in their own life and in their com­mu­nity’’ she says.

‘‘At the end of the each year, the chil­dren get a chance to be a part of a per­for­mance which is the high­light of each year with a lot of work and ef­fort go­ing into it, but worth it all,’’ Sophia says.

The academy is ex­cited about of­fer­ing a new class this year for those stu­dents wish­ing to take Trin­ity Col­lege ex­am­i­na­tions.

The academy also has on of­fer a Per­form­ing Arts Class for those stu­dents wish­ing to take per­form­ing to a whole new level. It de­vel­ops stu­dents with solo singing, group har­mony work and class rou­tines.

‘‘Be­cause it’s a per­for­mance based class we try to get the group out and about per­form­ing in pub­lic,’’ Sophia says.

The academy’s vo­cal tu­tor is lo­cal singing celebrity Amy Hunt.

So, any par­ents who are frus­trated at watch­ing their child sit in front of a screen th­ese hol­i­days or would like to give your child a chance to ex­press them­selves in a cre­ative way, it might be time to get on the phone or email to find out more. This could be the year for your child to shine.

For any in­quiries phone Sophia Parker on (06)3546323 or email sophia.parker@clear.net.nz.

In a scene from the play The Bold Buc­ca­neers, per­formed by stu­dents of the He­len O’Grady Drama Academy, the crew, left, Ge­or­giana Rochester, Jack Parker, Jenna Sharples, Olly Dale, Ben Lu­cas and Cameron Babb plead with the Cap­tain, Rob Hind­marsh, to have a longer break.

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