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Gryphon Rock Challenge wins in Bournemouth!

Gryphon students are celebrating after winning first place in the Rock Challenge competition held in Bournemouth last week.  Hundreds of pupils from across Somerset and Dorset showed off their choreography skills at Bournemouth’s Pavilion Theatre, performing eight minute pieces on a chosen theme.

The Gryphon beat 7 other schools with their performance ‘Fukushima 11.3’. The piece explored the devastating tsunami that hit North Eastern Japan on 11th March 2011. As well as portraying the tsunami itself they also included the destruction of the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant which caused radioactive leakage. The whole production was led by Matthew Stokes and Georgia Holder, two Sixth Form students, who choreographed the performance, ran rehearsals, created ideas for set and costume as well as chose the soundtrack. The set design was planned and created by students as well as former student Gabriel Macey who decided to return to The Gryphon and help their entry again this year. Their fantastic dedication to the piece was also recognised by the Rock Challenge team who presented them with the ‘Student Leadership award’ for their hard work and commitment to the performance.

The Gryphon Rock Challenge team smashed the competition – as well as being awarded 1st place, they also received 13 individual awards for excellence in: concept, performance skill, choreography, entertainment, stage use, visual enhancement, set design and function, lighting, stage crew, costuming character, video performance, student leadership and the cultural and educational award.

Head of Drama Holly Young said “The students delivered an absolutely amazing performance! The creativity and dedication they have demonstrated over the past few months on everything from choreography, to set building, lighting to costumes and make-up, has been outstanding. All involved should be very proud of their hard work”.

Deputy Lieutenant of Dorset, Mrs Jane Stichbury CBE presented first prize to The Gryphon School. She said: “It was a real privilege to be here tonight, I thought the standard was so high and I particularly liked the themes. The word that came through on virtually everybody was teamwork and the benefits they got from taking part in Rock Challenge so I think it was absolutely superb.”

The Gryphon team will now progress to the Rock Challenge Southern Premier Final at Portsmouth Guildhall in April.

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