Damascus College is celebrating a strong representation of past students and staff in the recent production of Mamma Mia! by BLOC Music Theatre Company.
The musical, which ran from 12 – 23 May at Her Majesty’s Theatre Ballarat, saw many who attended Damascus College or one of their three founding schools (Sacred Heart College, St Paul’s Technical College, St Martin’s in the Pines) featured across all areas of the production.
Among the Damascus representation in the production team was musical director Geoff Martin (Class of 1996), assistant director and choreographer Natalya Munro (Class of 2017), and fellow alumni and vocal director Magella Muller. Natalya said the process of choreographing was exciting yet challenging.
‘It was an experience of a lifetime’, she said, ‘it really pushed me as a creative, but I always felt so supported’.
Natalya said she enjoyed reuniting with other Damascus alumni and reflected fondly on her time at the college.
‘It was whilst I was a student at Damascus that my love and appreciation for theatre began’, she said.
‘Knowing that so many other past and present students and staff of Damascus were a part of the production, just goes to show the incredible influence the performing arts at Damascus has.’
On stage, Jason Muller (Class of 1990) played Sam Carmichael, and Damascus’ First Aid Officer Simon Carroll played Father Alexandrios. Simon said performing with BLOC felt like an amazing expression of community.
‘I was welcomed into an established cast and production team that had the bonus of including work colleagues both past and present’, he said.
‘All of us, including the people I knew as students at Damascus and their family members, were privileged to be on the receiving end of amazing audience support with well over 7000 people dancing in the aisles’.
Backstage saw many past Damascus students involved, with Daniel (Class of 2015) and Matthew Gay (Class of 2017) as sound technicians, and Aaron Rivett (Class of 2007) and fellow alumni Megan Poynton also working on sound and lighting.
Damascus staff who participated in the musical included guitar teacher Harry Dale and teacher Vicki Rowe performing in the orchestra, while Humanities and Indonesian teacher Brendan Bawden was part of the two-man Fly Crew who moved scenery in and out from above the stage.
Drama is offered as a subject from Year 7-12 at Damascus College, with an annual school production offered to interested students.
Damascus College congratulates all cast members on a fantastic show.
Photo – Nigel Stevens Photography