Theatrical double bill from years 7 & 8 and 9&10 wows audiences over three nights

The recent productions of Free and Coram Boy by years 7 & 8 and 9 & 10 respectively were performed over three consecutive nights and received plaudits from the audiences for the superb performances

Bolingbroke were recently treated to a double bill of two plays in one evening, with years 7 & 8 performing Free, and Year 9 and 10 Coram Boy.

This was the first time that the school has attempted to put on two shows in one day, and while it was a ambitious aim, the pupils and staff more than rose to the challenge, putting on excellent performances.

Year 7 & 8 throwing themselves into an impressive performance of Free

Free by David Grant was the first performance of the evening, and was directed by theatre co-ordinator Matthew Kalorkoti, with Betty, (year 13), Glen (year 12) and Peggy (year 11) as assistant directors. It is a story about a class left without a teacher. To relieve the boredom they launch an expedition, and two students who never normally break the rules are sent to steal something from the head’s office. The unlikely partners in crime return as heroes and set about re enacting the theft, but in the ensuing chaos one student discovers that he too has been the victim of theft and accusations fly.

“The event was well attended on all three nights, with the Friday sold out,” said Mr Kalorkoti. “ The audience were overwhelmingly positive, as was Ms Edis who brought the last night to a close with her heartfelt speech. We are also very proud of all pupils involved, and delighted with how it went.

One of the dramatic scenes from Coram Boy superbly performed by Years 9 & 10

The second performance of the evening was Coram Boy adapted by Helen Edmunson from the novel by Jamila Gavin which was first performed at the National Theatre in 2005 when it won the Time Out Live Award for Best Play. Drama teacher Jess Murphy directed Bolingbroke’s year 9 & 10 production, and was ably assisted by Dexter and Megan (both year 12) who acted as assistant directors, and Olivia from year 9 in charge of lighting for Free and sound for Coram Boy.

A tense scene in Coram Boy

The drama intensifies in Free

The play has been dramatised from the Whitbread Award-winning novel set in 18th-century England. The evil Otis Gardner preys on unmarried mothers, promising to take their babies (and their money) to Thomas Coram's hospital for foundling children. Instead, he buries the babies and pockets the loot. But Otis's downfall is set in train when his half-witted son Meshak falls in love with a young girl, Melissa, and rescues the unwanted son she has had with a disgraced aristocrat. The child is brought up in Coram's hospital, and proves to have inherited the startling musical gifts of his father - gifts that ultimately bring about his father's redemption and a heartbreaking family reunion.

Another dramatic moment in Free when our young actors surpassed themselves 

The audience were equally wowed and chilled by the three performances of Coram Boy with parents telling me on each of the nights that they were amazed by the level of tension created by the pupils,” said Ms Murphy. “Every pupil in the performance was outstanding, both lead and supporting roles coming together to create a very mature and gritty piece of theatre.”

The drama reaches fever pitch in a scene from Free

Another intense moment in Coram Boy

A big thanks to the Parents' Association who did a sterling job serving up refreshments in the foyer, as well as by members of Year 12 who raised funds for the Student Senate.