For four nights of last week (21st – 24th March) St Julian’s School Drama and Music departments presented performances of Footloose by Tom Snow and Dean Pitchford. The musical tells the story of how ‘rock and roll’ music and dancing have been banned in a small, sleepy American town following an accident where four young people lost their lives. Ren arrives in the town, Bomont, from Chicago and rallies the young folk of the town to hold a dance and change the hearts and minds of the Bomont church council controlled by Reverend Shaw Moore.

Our students performed each and every night with unyielding enthusiasm, confidence and each and every member was thoroughly convincing in the portrayal of their character. The dance routines were slick and energetic and brilliantly choreographed by Ms Gorman and Ms Porter.

Students told the story through their fantastic acting skills from highly emotional characterisations of the trouble Reverend (Carlo Fenucci), his wife Vi (Aimee Clark) and Ren’s mother Ethel (Caitlin Hayes); through the defiant and strong willed characters of the lead couple Ren (Matthew Clark) and Ariel (Hollie-Jane Flannigan); to the highly comical and quirky characters of Rusty (Jasmine Curtis) and Willard (Callum Stoneley-Bennet)

There were outstanding musical numbers from the cast and principals alike starting with the rousing chorus of Footloose/ On Any Sunday by the whole cast and group and individual performances from Ariel and the girls in Holding Out for A Hero, a touching rendition of Ren and Ariel’s ballad Almost Paradise, Rusty’s wonderful Let’s Hear it for the Boy, Willard and the boys’ hilarious performance of Mama Says and Vi’s beautifully emotional performances of Can You Find it in your Heart? to name but a few.

It was my pleasure to work with such a wonderful and diverse cast which was drawn from all year groups showed that dedication and hard work paid off. They clearly became like a ‘family’, making new friends and memories that will last for ever and showing large audiences from our community why St Julian’s really is the Route to Success.