Last week, thirteen pupils with an enthusiasm for Drama set off for the Telunas Middle School’s Festival run by ISTA (International Schools Theatre Association). The festival is held every year at the beautiful Telunas Beach Resort in Indonesia. Seven other schools, from as far as Beijing and Phnom Penh, joined five talented theatre practitioners and actors who had flown from the UK especially for the event. Within moments of the pupils arriving on the remote beach, they set to work in mixed ensemble groups to create original theatre work.
Over the course of the three-day festival, the pupils worked with artists and teachers in workshops spanning mask work, physical theatre and stage combat. In ensemble groups, pupils created an original piece of movement theatre that reflected their own personal stories based on poems they had written. In the evenings, pupils performed, listened and told stories around the campfire whilst toasting marshmallows. The main showcase of work was performed at 6:00am on a serene Sunday morning on the beach as the sun rose. It was a wonderful experience and one that I will expect the pupils will remember for a very long time.