Friday, July 15th, 2011 - St Stephen's School
MAGIC, menace and mayhem are being let loose at St Stephen’s School this August – but it’s all in the name of art.

A selection of the best fairytales by the Brothers Grimm are being brought to life as part of Grimm Tales, adapted for the stage by Carole Anne Duffy and directed by drama teacher Amanda Crewes.

“The production is full of all the magic and wonder you find in your imagination with a little pinch of mischief thrown in,” Miss Crewes said.

“I am fascinated in, what seems to be, the dying art of storytelling and I was attracted to this play because of the enchanted world of the Brothers Grimm.

“There’s a lot of deliciously gruesome fun as livers and lungs are salted, simmered and served for dinner; eyeballs are pecked out by disgruntled birds and toes and heels are cut off so feet can fit into shoes.

“Yet the fairytale heroes still manage to confront their enemies and triumph over fear and injustice.”

With many people isolating themselves with iPods, laptops, iPhones and other electronic devices nowadays, Miss Crewes said Grimm Tales was a chance to escape from the cold technical world with stories to warm the soul.

“A professional German storyteller, Elfriede Kleinhan, noted ‘The age for hearing these fairytales is three years to death’,” she said.

“The stories of the Brothers Grimm don’t only speak to the young and, as a result, Grimm Tales is a production for all ages.

“They manage to cleverly balance magic with the right amount of gruesome, which means the stories come to life on stage like a dream.”

Performing from age eight, Miss Crewes has been involved with Floreat’s Playlovers since she was 12 and went on to study at the WA Academy of Performing Arts.

Since then, she has worked professionally with Effie Crump, Class Act, Handzon, Agelink, Kompany M and Barking Gecko Theatres, Dirty Dicks Theatre Restaurant and the Perth Theatre Company.

As a drama teacher, Miss Crewes directed the highly-successful Noises Off at St Stephen’s School in 2010 and, due to its popularity, remounted it for another season at Playlovers in February this year.

With Grimm Tales, she says her main challenge is the physical demands it places on the actors.

“We have been looking closely at the works of [innovative experimental Polish theatre director] Jerzy Grotowski and [Russian theatre director and actor] Vsevolold Meyerhold, which will enable the actors to use their own physicalisation – where they use their bodies for expression – as a means of storytelling,” Miss Crewes said.

“I really want to create a magical world in the audience’s imagination without forcing too many of my ideas in there.

“In essence, the play is a chance for their minds to run free as we stimulate the imagery for them.”

Miss Crewes said one of the most exciting elements of the production for her was seeing young actors transform into their characters on stage.

“It’s a great challenge for them, particularly given the vast number of characters they have to play in this show,” she said.

“I have desire to excite young children and adults through the magical world of the theatre and I believe this is the best play to achieve that.”

Grimm Tales plays at 7pm, August 4, 5 and 6 with a 2pm matinee on August 6. Tickets are $10 – book on 9243 2100.

St Stephen’s School’s Duncraig Theatre is at 100 Doveridge Drive, Duncraig.

grimm1: Cameron Taylor and Matthew Gray find horsing around is no fairytale in Grimm Tales at St Stephen’s School with Emma Connor, Hayley Seddon, Shene Dorney, Patrice Axisa, Hayley Smith and Hayley Hatfield.

grimm2: Olivia Saunders, Patrice Axisa, Carissa Efford-Ragan and Cameron Taylor discover the stakes are high in St Stephen’s School’s production of Grimm Tales this August.

grimm3: St Stephen’s School students Emma Connor, Matthew Gray, Shene Dorney, Olivia Saunders, Patrice Axisa, Duncan Scott and Hayley Hatfield are bringing fairytales of yesteryear to life in Grimm Tales.

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St Stephen's School

A school of the Uniting Church in Australia, situated on two campuses in the northern Perth suburbs of Duncraig and Carramar. The Duncraig campus caters for students from Year 3 to Year 12, while the Carramar campus caters for students from pre-primary through to Year 12. A new Early Learning Centre opened in 2011 at Hepburn Heights for Kindergarten to Year 2.

On each campus there is a Head of Primary and a Head of Secondary, while the Principal oversees both campuses and reports to the one Council.

Our School is renowned for its outstanding pastoral care and its dynamic and holistic approach to education. The School environment provides a friendly, co-educational learning community where students can learn readily and develop and grow as people.
Amanda Crewes
P: 0400 025 079


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