PAS VIC 2012 fun!
During the school holidays, singers and dancers from NIYPAA’s Essendon and Rosanna centres gathered at Santa Maria College, Northcote, for the annual Performing Arts School (PAS), a three-day intensive workshop for the Australian Youth Choir and Australian Youth Dance Theatre.
Students made new friends and cemented old friendships in a fun-filled and energetic atmosphere It is the holidays after all and while there is much work to be done on technique and repertoire, in the end they walked away feeling they had not only achieved their goals but had a great time doing it!. They all had plenty to say but Kaitlyn, a level 2 chorister, was especially enthusiastic about the opportunity to see the choir and dancers working together.
Here’s a list of why PAS rocks!
- A good way to keep warm during the winter school holidays – a daily physical warm up with both dancers and singers is part of the tradition. Chicken dance anyone?
- Have a break from school and hanging out with new kids from other choir or dance venues
- Dress-up days
- Hilarious games
- Fun songs with silly actions
- New dance music and choreography
- Exams for dancers to move to the next level
- Jokes with teachers
- Not wearing school uniforms!
One of the grand traditions of PAS is fancy dress and as ususal 2012 turned up some very inventive dress themes. Come as your favourite music artist, gave us a variety of rock stars and pop idols and included a variety of song styles including Bing Crosby, KD Lang, and Louis Tomlinson. ( we think that some mum’s and dad’s had a role to play too!)
Your favourite fictional character, gave us a chance to see what everyone was reading or watching on video and we saw a varied cast of whimsy, including a splendid Simba from The Lion King, a Mad Hatter and many others.
Harry Potter theme. was by far the most exciting. n an amazing feat of travel across time and space, Santa Maria College morphed into a realization of Hogwarts College. It seems there is no end to the magical powers of our students and they were determined to be sure we k new it!
One of the delights of PAS is entering a large venue on the first day with piles new music to introduce and new choreography to learn. So many kids were astounded at how much they had achieved in two short days.
Choristers tasted a varied repertoire of songs exploring a wide range of moods and emotions including songs from Coldplay, the Seekers, and the BeeGees, among others. Songs such as Paradise, and New York Mining Disaster 1941 formed part of the varied soundtrack to a varied program across the three days.
The dance program offered a wide variety of activities and challenges. During this time annual assessments take place for the first time and there is much practice to be done in hall ways and corridors if students are to impress. as a high point of PAS with many being promoted to the next level.
With exams completed the focus can then turn to new techniques; and the most fun of all – new choreography Kat, Emily, and Hannah were all very proud of their achievements and commented that the impact of intensive work can already be seen by the second day at PAS. “We learnt lots of new techniques. It’s very challenging, but helps us to move things forward.”
“(It’s) amazing to see how fast we’ve learnt all this new stuff” (Kat), and “it’s so good to work with a larger group of dancers, and to see people from other venues” (Emily).
On the final day, PAS was brought to an exciting close with short performances from all groups. WE were all sad that it was over for another year, none more than Mia “PAS is just so much fun, I wish it could be on for every single day of the whole school holidays!”
Dr Kieran is committed to the musical development of the Australian Youth Choir members at Essendon and enjoys his weekly rehearsals with students.