Prep students direct Beauty and the Beast

Around this time of year, most A-level students are trying to minimise drama in their lives.

Most, but not all: One group of Cayman Prep and High School seniors have willingly invited drama into their hectic schedule by deciding to present a school play.

Jordyn Cleaver and Kiersten Stewart not only co-directed and produced a dramatic performance of Beauty and the Beast, they also put their own unique spin on this classic fairy tale.

‘I think the changes have made it a lot more fun and less boring,’ said Christopher Bodden, who plays the part of the Beast.

Ms Cleaver and Ms Stewart adapted an original version of the tale to include several musical numbers from the popular Disney re-telling.

Together with their assistant director, Joe Jackson, this team has been leading rehearsals since the auditions in September.

‘Auditions were on 12 September, I think. So we have been rehearsing from roughly the start of November,’ said Megan Belenger, who stars as Beauty.

The newcomer was pleasantly surprised to be chosen for a major role after only recently joining the school.

‘It actually feels amazing because it makes the year so much fun and I made so many friends,’ she said.

The extensive cast and production crew span a range of students, whose grade levels vary from seven to 12.

Ms Cleaver, Ms Stewart and Mr. Jackson were pleased that the cast had mixed so well, though they admitted that rehearsals were sometimes challenging despite the students’ level of commitment.

‘They have had dips and flows, now they are really flowing,’ said Marva Buchanan, from the school’s Drama department.

‘They got together a production team of sixth formers who did the publicity posters, they made the music, created the lighting, and designed the set. We’ve had students develop a whole lot of skills … there has been a steep learning curve,’ Ms Buchanan said.

Principal Sheila Purdom also congratulated the A-level students on their efforts: ‘This is a most commendable initiative by our A-level drama students. It has provided them with firsthand experience of directing a production and we are very impressed with their achievements.’

The show was performed for the first time last night and will continue to be shown tonight and tomorrow night at the school’s Walkers Road location.

Tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for children, and can be purchased by calling 949-9115 or stopping by the Cayman Prep and High School office on Walkers Road.