South Dartmoor Community College showcases performing arts talent with Summer Gala

Claire Small's picture
Authored by Claire Small
Posted Friday, June 28, 2019 - 8:28am

One hundred students at South Dartmoor Community College in Ashburton, Devon, showcased a range of talents at their Summer Performing Arts Gala, taking part in dance, drama and gymnastics in front of an audience of teachers, parents and fellow students. 

As well as displaying a range of performing arts talents, the Gala also serves to strengthen the links with primaries linked to South Dartmoor Community College, building strong relationships between the schools. Four primary clubs performed alongside students from the college on the night, with many audience members praising their fantastic performances.

The dedication of former students also shone through, with this year’s Year 11s volunteering to take photographs of the performance and making up a core part of the audience. The audience were an integral part of the Gala, with a ‘Pin Your Praise’ board set up, allowing audience members to leave positive feedback for the performers on the night. Personalised notes will be passed onto students from the college and participating primary schools. 

Money from the college’s production profits went to the Ashburton Carnival as a thank you for the use of set for this year’s college production. A donation of money from the Gala also went to Friends of South Dartmoor Association (FOSDA) as a thank you for the hard work of the parent group who has supported throughout. 

South Dartmoor Community College followed up the Gala with an A-Level Drama performance the following evening, where students performed their practical coursework for their Theatre Studies course. 

Any prospective students who may be interested are welcome to attend the college’s A-Level Induction days, taking place on the first week of July, where there will be information on a range of Performing Arts subjects available. Prospective students and their families are also welcome to attend the Music Gala and Awards on 27th June at 7pm, where they will be able to watch the hard work current students in performing arts.

The Summer Performing Arts Gala was also a brilliant precursor to the launch of the college production for 2019/20. If any local organisations would be interested in sponsoring the event, they are invited to contact the academy directly. 

Rachel Lewis, Head of Music at South Dartmoor Community College, said: “The range of talents on display at the Gala was absolutely breath-taking, and I know that the audience were as impressed as I was with all the students who participated on the day. 

“All of those who were involve deserve to be so proud of what they achieved, and I am very much looking forward to the upcoming Music Gala where even more of our fantastic students will perform, showing the results of their hard work and commitment.”

Abi Cowell, Acting Subject Lead/Teacher of Dance at South Dartmoor Community College, said: “I am incredibly proud of the students’ performances in the Gala, and equally proud of wonderful work of our primary participants. It goes to show what we can achieve in partnership with each other and with the local community. 

“Our staff team have shown immense dedication and deserve to be recognised for their hard work and commitment to making the whole event possible. Thank you to everyone who helped make the Gala such a success.”

One parent who thanked staff for their work with her children who took part in the Boys Dance Project for the first time this term, said: “On the first week my son was too anxious and embarrassed to join in and clinging to me. This trait he appears to have has been an ongoing challenge for him at school. It is fantastic that he has now felt the amazing feeling of being part of something big...and he loved it! I'm so delighted that he is finally gaining confidence. Both of my children are keen to re-join when the club restarts. Once again, thank you for investing time and energy into my children.”