An adventure on the high seas: the School play

QE took to the high seas for this year’s School play, Treasure Island – a rollicking tale of piracy in the 18th century.

More than 70 pupils, staff, Old Elizabethans and friends of the school were involved in staging playwright Ken Ludwig’s fast-paced adaptation of Robert Louis Stevenson’s perennial favourite.

The cast comprised boys from Years 7-13, ably supported by a large technical support crew. Suitably bracing nautical accompaniment was composed specially for the occasion and delivered by an orchestra led by the School’s Director of Music, Kieron Howe.

""Headmaster Neil Enright congratulated all involved in the play, which ran over two evenings in the Shearly Hall: “To the audience, this was simply a very enjoyable and successful evening, but to all those involved, both on stage and behind the scenes, it was a very ambitious production, requiring both skill and dedication over a period of many weeks.

""“High-quality extra-curricular activities such as drama are an essential part of QE’s success, enabling boys to enjoy worthwhile pursuits while at the same time developing in them both technical skills and character attributes.”

Memorable moments during the play included appearances by the pet parrot of Long John Silver. The colourful puppet, constructed by Art teacher Jeanne Nicodemus, was operated by cast members deploying skills they learned at a recent National Theatre puppetry workshop which followed their visit to see War Horse.

""The production’s director, Elaine White, explained how the whole School had been primed for the play, which is the main QE production this year. “There were several appearances around the School by our swashbuckling characters. Traditional sea shanties, prepared with help from Music teacher Jennifer Brown, have echoed through our classrooms and the School’s Dance Club have come ‘on board’ with some merry jigs,” she said.