St Edmund’s College Starlight Express – a triumph!

Well, what a week! Starlight Express pulled into Broxbourne Spotlight Station and showed just what steam and a whole lot of locomotion can do!!

Starlight Express was the fifth, and perhaps the most ambitious, production we have held at the Spotlight theatre, Broxbourne. It was an explosion of fun, colour and larger than life characters, all played out on roller skates.

Our students, from Elements to Rhetoric, had been rehearsing and learning to roller skate since September; it was a challenge, with rather large bruises for some, but all will agree it has been completely worth it. The finished production that the audiences, over 1500 people in total, witnessed over the five sell out performances was nothing short of spectacular.

This year we dual cast the show given the large number and talent of those who auditioned and also in case we did have some mishaps along the way! Luckily there were no serious injuries and both casts delivered their performances as the team that they had become. The dual cast also allowed more of our students to shine as there were so many opportunities for involvement; we were spoiled to have two ‘A teams’, each with a slightly different take on the characters but both excellent.

Our production and backstage crew only got into the theatre to build the set on Monday night and by Tuesday morning the students arrived to don their skates and finally start rehearsing on the real stage and specially built racing track. By Wednesday afternoon both casts were ready to perform in front of our friends from junior schools, giving no indication that they had only just been initiated into skating on the Spotlight stage and extended track.

The show went without a hitch and then that was it: the first night, with a full house, opening to parents, friends and family!  A further three shows just astounded everyone that came to see the show. The quality of singing, acting and skating was incredible with some people even thinking they were lip-syncing to a backing track! The camaraderie between the students was clear for everyone to see making the performances even more special if that was possible.

All of this would not be possible without the support of our wonderful staff who supported the cast in so many ways and, of course, all the parents. We thank also the staff at Spotlight for all their attention and dedication; it was particularly special to have Councillor Crump, Mayor of Broxbourne with us on the opening night and we thank her for her continued support.

What will do next year? For now it is a secret, but what we have learned over the years is that it will be superb!!