Thinking about our school productions is no easy task; how best to cater for a show that is suitable for school performance, that is inclusive to both Primary and Secondary children and makes use of as much of our instrumental ensembles as possible, whilst presenting a theme that is relevant to our school in our 25th Anniversary year presents many challenges.
After much deliberation, we are delighted to announce the school musical for 2020 as Chitty Chitty Bang Bang. This age-old classic will surely bring back fond memories for many. With the story written by James Bond author, Ian Fleming and music composed by the Sherman Brothers of Mary Poppins fame, our audiences will be inspired with some great songs, a truly imaginative story and stunning choreography and set, there is much to love.
I am sure many of our parents will be familiar with this fantasmagorical story of that famous flying car, but it’s a story that goes much deeper than that. Caractacus Potts, a struggling inventor and single dad, works hard to come up with new inventions that he can sell to support his two adorable children and their ageing and slightly senile grandad. It is certainly a story of family values as well as a story that celebrates creative thought and ingenuity, and although the original movie came out in 1968, the sentiment and theme of the story is still very relevant today.
The children spend many hours playing on an old wrecked car in a scrapyard, but when the scrapyard owner wants to sell the car as junk, the children convince their father to buy it for them. In a desperate attempt to raise the required cash, Caractacus tries to put his inventions to good use and encounters some surprises along the way. The need for creativity, alternate thinking and strong family support has never been more significant than in 2020. Eventually he is able to buy the car, and the story from then onwards is legendary. The message of looking out for each other and believing in yourself, especially when things don’t go the way you expect them to, is definitely a message we should be imparting to our children today.
The musical will take place in our school auditorium over 4 performances from June 11-13th in Term 2 next year. We will be looking for students to form the chorus parts as well as audition for lead roles, technical assistance, backstage and make-up. As in previous years, the lead parts will be double cast to allow for a greater number of students to take lead roles. The orchestral accompaniment will also be provided by our own school orchestra and other musicians.
One special feature for 2020 will be our collaboration with FACE Productions. FACE productions run very well-known performing arts training programmes in Hong Kong and lead several large scale professional productions every year. In the past, many of our AISHK students have joined their productions and benefitted enormously from their expertise and the experience of involvement in large scale shows such as this. I believe it is a great opportunity for our students to be working alongside professionals such as these and participate in these lifelong learning opportunities. A link to the FACE Productions website can be found here.
The auditions for lead roles for Chitty Chitty Bang Bang will be on Sunday 24th November and the show will be open to children who are entering Year 5 in 2020 and up to year 12. Students who participate in the show will be expected to attend all rehearsals as well as the musical camp scheduled for May next year. The full list of times and dates will be confirmed once parts have been selected. Please complete the Google form by clicking on the link to apply to take part in the show, there will also be a push notification from our school app.
I am tremendously excited about hosting Chitty Chitty Bang Bang in 2020, as well as working alongside FACE productions. This story has made such a big impact on my life and the melodies and story will remain forever etched in my head.
I really hope that this wonderful stage show will also become a cherished memory for you and your children from our own production here at AISHK.
Peter Stapleton | Head of Performing Arts