Former British prima ballerina Dame Beryl Grey, EastEnders actor John Partridge and Republica lead singer Saffron were guests of honour at the Gielgud Academy of Performing Arts (GAPA) show this year.
The annual end-of-year production was held at The Hawth in Crawley.
More than 150 Sussex pupils (aged five to 18) who train at the school based in Haywards Heath, took part in a dance, drama and musical theatre production called Showtime 2018.
This featured a full-length ballet of the Carnival of the Animals and a contemporary dance to Bach’s We Sit down in Tears depicting the crucifixion of Christ. Musical theatre numbers from Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, Beauty and the Beast and West Side Story were performed to music played live by the seven-piece GAPA Band on stage. After the matinee and evening show came the annual prize-giving ceremony with more than 40 medals, awards and cups presented to deserving pupils for progress and outstanding achievements.
Many former GAPA pupils (Gielgudians) are now working in the industry, including Matt Hill who is on the UK tour of Summer Holiday, Isaac Edwards who is in the cast of Bat Out for Hell in the West End and Carina Howard who is with the Mark Bruce Dance Company.
Dame Beryl Grey said: “The standard of dancing, the incredible number of super ideas, everything was so very enjoyable and entertaining. I felt I must be at a West End show. Congratulations on a remarkable evening. What a lot of work you have put in to have achieved such a high standard.”
GAPA restarts term in September, but has a summer school during August. Any enquiries should be made to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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