A magical musical inspired by master storyteller Roald Dahl brought his colourful characters to life at Newington Community Primary School in Ramsgate.
Hundreds of children from all classes from Nursery and Reception to Year 6 celebrated the wit and wisdom of the author’s many memorable stories.
Each year group performed songs relating to the books they have studied, with lyrics changed in well-known stage tunes to reflect the stories; meanwhile a large video screen above the stage featured pupils acting out cameos from Dahl’s creative catalogue.
For example, Bad Guys from Bugsy Malone was used to highlight the rudeness of The Twits, while Any Dream Will Do from Joseph and the Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat in the BFG performance spotlighted the giant’s ability to catch dreams in his butterfly net.
Staff began the show with an energetic song and dance routine, the fast pace continued throughout, and culminated with all year groups packing the school theatre for a powerful and emotional rendition of When I Grow Up from the stage musical Matilda which all children have seen in London’s West End this term.
Each child and staff member wore specially designed dazzling glittering tee shirts to reflect the books being studied, while school corridors and reception were decorated with cut out characters and children’s writings about Dahl’s creations.
The show marked the end of cross-curricular topic that as well as being based around literacy used subjects in the stories to investigate other topics such as art, technology and science, as well as personal development issues like friendship, respect, and tolerance.
Deputy Head Teacher Becky Andrews co-ordinated the learning programme and the musical production. She said: “It has been a fantastic learning curve for us all and we have really enjoyed it.
“The effort and enthusiasm shown by our children and the staff to make the show a memorable production was enormous and it was a real team effort.”
Head Teacher Cliff Stokes said: “This show is the community highlight of our school year and over three performances brings together around 2,000 children, families and staff with a common purpose of fun, laughter and learning.
“The magic of Roald Dahl is so special and the stories he creates unlock the imaginations of our children year after year – he encourages and reinforces our love of literacy at Newington.
“As we say in the show, reading is dreaming with your eyes open.”