Great Leighs primary Dream Props

Happy 2023!

2023 – Here’s to a Dream of a Year! Well it’s fair to say that 2022 (like the previous Covid years) turned out to be fairly grim for a lot of people. Cost of living crisis, illness and generally tough times all round made for a tricky year. 2023 has begun in a not too dissimilar fashion. We’re all still tightening our belts, all suffering from the inevitable winter bugs, coughs and colds (and worse) and all trying to lift our morale by dreaming of better times ahead. So I’m happy to report that FINDING THE WILL has kicked off the year with a Dream of a Week literally!

The Dream that is Great Leighs Primary

Quite seriously I’ve now lost count of the number of visits we’ve made to this warm and friendly Primary School in Essex. I think this was visit number 5? Or maybe it was number 6? Anyway it was lovely to hear from Miss Le Masurier last summer in order to set up a Project Week for 2023. Nick and I were due to return last week but, due to family illness and subsequent bereavement, I had to fly in Fay to take over at the last minute (not literally of course, she only lives in Wales!). Have I mentioned which play we were doing yet by the way? If I say fairies, Lovers, Market Stallholders, Donkey………..??? Yes, of course, it was A MIDSUMMER NIGHT’S DREAM – and, as advertised above, a dream of a week it turns out to have been.

“It was a fantastic week. There was a real buzz around the school which was lovely.”

Emily Le Masurier
From the Great Leighs Newsletter

Now, if it doesn’t sound too boastful, we’re used to getting favourable comments from teachers (presumably that’s why they keep inviting us back). However, it’s great to receive lovely feedback from our very own practitioners as well. This is what Fay had to say:

“One of the things I noticed was that many children were prepared to cover for their classmate’s lines and actions at very short notice! Even when they were not the most confident to begin with. So I would like to thank all those who stood in, and there were also some great performances, brilliant dance routines, and some great scriptwriting by the officers!”

from the Great Leighs Newsletter

If anyone is familiar with THE DREAM and is wondering how they have previously missed the integral roles of the Officers, let me explain. In the Great Leighs version these are Police Officers brought in to keep the noise down in the very excited Market Place. That’s the joy of a Project Week – absolutely every child taking part gets a speaking role. So if William Shakespeare didn’t write enough parts………..we invent!

Nick, meanwhile, reported back that the ‘Va Va Voom’ shimmy – oh come now, surely you remember Moth, Cobweb, Mustardseed, Peaseblossom and all other fourteen fairies doing that in the original(?!) – was something to behold. I so wish I had seen this!

As always at Great Leighs, a Project Week is a whole school event. Even the wonderful catering staff get involved, dreaming up (see what I did there?) a special Shakespeare Lunch and dressing for the occasion too. Only at Great Leighs……..and we love it!

Absolutely everyone gets involved at Great Leighs!

Thank you!

A Massive THANK YOU then to a list of people this year. Firstly, Mr Garlick and the Funding Gods for inviting us back in. Next, Miss Le Masurier for doing all the organising as ever. Then all the KS2 staff for their support during the week and my amazing team of practitioners, Nick and Fay. Last but not least, the incredible KS2 actors, all 137 of them – you were a dream to work with so take another bow!

We’ll be back next month with reports on THE TEMPEST with Year 3 in a Bristol Primary School and a day of MACBETH in a fabulous Special School in Peterborough.

Till then, as my wonderful Dad used to say, “Keep Smiling!”!

1934 -2023

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