Mamma Mia! Teachers galore

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There are 11 teachers in the cast of the Gore Musical Theatre production of Mamma Mia.

Gore Musical Theatre vice-president Yvette Davis said a variety of teachers, including primary school teachers, high school teachers, teacher aides, music teachers and dance teachers, were included in the cast.

Longford Intermediate year seven teacher Emily Mason said this was her second Gore Musical Theatre show but she had been involved with Gore theatre many times before.

“I was in Hairspray and Avenue Q.”

“I also co-directed Beauty and the Beast Junior,” she said.

Miss Mason said she continued to get involved because she loved it.

“I love the feeling of giving back in the form of entertainment.

“Being in shows gets very addictive .. it’s known as the theatre bug. Once you start, it’s very hard to stop. It’s such a rush being onstage and performing in front of an audience.”

Miss Mason said some of the pupils in her class loved hearing about how the show was shaping up.

“Overall, the girls in my class are more excited than the boys, but I do have boys who have gone home and begged their parents to get tickets so they can come and watch.”

Miss Mason said several pupils would be watching her perform when the show hit the stage.

“I hope their reaction is positive .. the students who came to see Hairspray in 2015 loved it.”

Miss Mason said balancing teaching and performing was challenging, especially as opening night got near.

“Teaching and Mamma Mia are both very demanding and take a lot of energy, so it takes a lot out of you. It’s lucky the cast of Mamma Mia are such amazing people, as it becomes your social life, as well.”

Miss Mason says she uses skills gained through theatre while teaching.

“Teaching can be very similar to acting at times, particularly skills around public speaking – how you stand and use your voice.”

She encourages anybody interested in theatre to come along and audition.

Gore Musical Theatre newcomer and Jade School of Dance hip-hop teacher Nicole Parry said it was her first musical.

She teaches 9 to 17-year-olds and says they are all very supportive of her theatre.

Miss Parry said she had been “really busy” balancing the show and dance training but it was worth it.

“It’s definitely been a very busy time, with my students sitting their dance exams in a few weeks, my own dance training. I have a ballet exam coming up, and the long rehearsals for the show.”

“However, the two go hand-in-hand and performing regularly and maintaining my own dancing skills makes me a better teacher.”

Miss Parry encourages anybody considering theatre to join next time.

“If musical theatre is something you’ve always considered, then what have you got to lose? We have lots of first-timers in this production.

“You will get all the help you need to be at your best along the way.”

Mamma Mia‘s gala night is tomorrow.