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2023 Musical

02 October 2023

Several students who contributed to this year's production of Footloose: The Musical share how their combined efforts brought this iconic 1980s musical to life.


Hunter Ireland (Year 11)
Musicals are a fantastic way to convey your creativity and talent. For me, it is more than just that. It is a way to express my feelings, my personality and, most importantly, my identity. Footloose: The Musical is an incredible show with great morals and messages behind the brilliant script and music. Fortunately, for us Nudgee College boys, we had this amazing musical to relate to and understand through its adaptation of teen struggles. The acting comes easy when we hold similar attitudes and beliefs that are shared within the show. Being given the privilege of being the lead, Ren McCormack, I gained a sense of leadership toward my fellow castmates where our trust in each other was shared. Friendships and a sense of belonging were created through the family generated by this diverse group of people. Watching everyone have fun and enjoy performing provoked a sense of exhilaration and excitement in me and reminded me that I love what I do. Whether we were singing, dancing or acting out scenes together, our connections and friendships were so very clear. I appreciate all involved with this year's musical and I am so glad to be part of this wonderful show as my last at Nudgee College.

Thomas Mallet (Year 12)
After successfully working on the production of Footloose: The Musical for six months alongside St Rita's College and Mary MacKillop College, it's easy to overlook the incredible journey that led us to opening night. To be part of a musical is an event unlike any other, having rehearsed for such an extended period of time that led to four performances across three days, whilst working with both students and staff who are like-minded. I had the opportunity to play Willard Hewitt, a loyal, genuine friend of Ren McCormack who, although seen as uptight at first, goes through a journey through the show to embrace who he is. Through inhabiting these roles, you find your own essence and establish connections between yourself and the character, enabling you to fully embrace yourself as them on stage. Drawing from my involvement in past musicals such as The Addams Family in the orchestra pit and performing in High School Musical: On Stage, two words profoundly resonate in the pursuit of success: family and self-discipline. The cast members become a second family, dedicating countless hours together, creating memories and forming lifelong friendships. From mastering intricate dance routines to tackling numerous songs and lines, there are always times of mistakes and falling down, yet it is self-discipline that steadfastly guides you towards achieving the final product. It has been a privilege to be part of three musicals at Nudgee College and I look forward to more amazing shows in the future.


Michael La Monaca (Year 12)
After my first musical experience in 2021 with our rendition of High School Musical: On Stage, the sense of community I got from working with all of the other people involved drew me back in for 2023. This year, I had the privilege of playing in the music pit, taking on the percussion role, meaning I am responsible for playing a variety of instruments, such as the snare drum, triangle, xylophone and vibraphone. I also took on the duties of playing and creating the sound effects for the musical, imitating the sounds of a train and tires screeching, to name a few. The biggest thing I enjoy about musicals is coming together as a cast and band, performing together as a large group, making not only a storyline come to life but also some incredible music. When coming together with all of the other boys and girls involved, you get to meet a lot of like-minded people and you really get to be yourself, which is such a rewarding experience. During my time in the musical, I have learnt a lot about playing percussion, having not played such an extensive range of instruments before. Prior to finding out that I had gotten the role and with the help of all of my Music teachers and tutors, I picked up a lot of skills in the percussion world. My favourite part of being in a production like this is the shows. It is so rewarding to see all of the hard work of the cast, band, stage crew and all of the staff finally pay off and be able to showcase our talents.


Emerson Klitscher (Year 11)
Participating in this musical marks my first-ever involvement in a College production. I've always considered being a part of such an event, so when this musical presented itself as my last chance, I couldn't let it slip away. Given my fascination with the inner workings and logistics behind the scenes, I found my I was best suited to a role in the backstage crew. My responsibilities revolved around efficiently organising and maneuvering props and set pieces on and off the stage. Beyond the excitement, this musical taught me valuable lessons in time management. Juggling my studies with the demands of the production has been more challenging than expected. But, it has ultimately helped me improve my overall ability to manage my time effectively. My favourite part has been watching this production evolve and improve over time. Observing everyone's progress evokes a sense of achievement for what has been accomplished.


Alejandro Rinaldi (Year 12)
In Term 1, Year 12 Visual Arts in Practice students completed a module with the challenge of redesigning a scene from Footloose: The Musical to bring it into the 21st century. We are a small class so this allowed us to work very closely with Ms Katherine Ellis to gain inspiration for our designs. The final product was a diorama of our selected scene. We created our diorama using a variety of materials, which included making mini props out of modeling clay. This module also allowed us to  assist Ms Ellis and the creative team in completing some structure of props. This included painting, assembling and creating images for the props on stage. We all loved this project since we got to visualise our own improved versions of our scene. Making the diorama was fun and sometimes tedious due to the scale of the project but the final product was well worth it. 


Sam Duffy (Year 9)
Being part of the Technical Production and Events Crew that works all year round on Nudgee College events means the chance to do a lot of great gigs, but the musical was always going to be the biggest in the 2023 calendar. Two years ago I worked on my first musical, High School Musical: On Stage, and had such a great time as a follow-spot operator that I was really looking forward to Footloose: The Musical. My job this year was a lighting operator, which consisted of setting up, programming and operating lighting equipment in the performances so that everything on stage looked great. There is no other Nudgee College event like it, from the set changes to the schedule, the scale of this event is huge. So to was the learning experience for the whole crew, who had to work hard behind the scenes to not only set up all of the lighting, sound and vision gear, but also learn the script, scene changes and so much more. One of the most challenging factors was planning to manage the musical on top of Showcase and Open Day only a few weeks prior. We were flat out, timelines were tight, and a lot of gear was shifted back and forth between venues. Overcoming these challenges to make Footloose: The Musical a success was a really rewarding process though, especially at times like the sitzprobe rehearsal, where the cast and band came together to rehearse for the first time and we saw the hard work really starting to pay off.