在以艺术为特色课程的朝阳凯文学校，每年保持推出一部大型戏剧的频率。从创校之初的第一部校本剧《高墙之后（Behind these walls）》，到去年的年度校本剧《暴风雨之夜（Once upon a stormy night）》，再到与莎士比亚环球剧院合作的《仲夏夜之梦》，上演了一幕幕跨越时代的旅程。
戏剧作为朝阳凯文三大特色课程之一艺术课程的主要部分，在朝阳凯文有着得天独厚的优势。设有独立220人容量的黑匣子剧场和 800 人容量的专业大剧场演艺中心，依托于中国传统文明和世界艺术文化，引入全球优质艺术教育资源，这些都支撑朝阳凯文艺术的特色课程开展与落地。
November 27, 17:00, at the backstage of Arts Center, there are only 30 minutes left before the last musical performance of primary school .
The audience began to take their seats in the grand Theatre.
“Take a deep breath — look ahead,” Che Booysen, the director and head of art department in primary school, told the class.
With the curtain went up , the deep sea appeared on the stage. The young actors went to their stage and presented a classic musical to the audience.
“The show belongs to everyone, from online rehearsals during the epidemic to seamless coordination, and we’ve gone through countless steps,” says Che.
From audition to characters selection, from reciting the lines to design details, from the front of the stage to the control room, from the teachers collecting recyclable waste in the campus, to sew costumes for the children with recyclable waste…, every part is memory of every Kaiwen student.
Chaoyang Kaiwen Academy, which owns unique art courses, it launches a large-scale drama every year. From the first drama at the beginning of the school “Behind the wall” , to the drama of last year “Once upon a stormy night”,and d to the collaboration with Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre. “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” ,it went through a long journey.
What’s different about this musical is that it started planning this spring. However, due to the COVID-19, rehearsals could not be carried out on-site once a week, so they did it online. The show time was also postponed from the June to September, and finally decided in November.
The difficulties and challenges are huge.
Even on the last day before the performance, there was a list of problems to solve in Che’s cell phone: Sandy’s microphone didn’t work, dancers couldn’t hold props on their heads, the waves weren’t big enough…
But even so, the children always ask the teacher optimistically: May I sing a song for you?Or at the end of the rehearsal, the students say: Can we rehearse again?
Speaking about musical of this year, Jessie, a drama teacher in the primary School, said: “When we chose the scripts, we were down to the last two scripts out of a huge number of scripts.One is related to magic, and the other is The Adventures of the Little Fish. It tells the story of a small fish on the bottom of the sea, breaking through obstacles and continuing upstream to see the sky.
After detailed discussion, our teachers found that this little fish adapts to various environments and overcome many difficulties in the process of achieve its dream, its courage and adaptability coincides with the motto of Chaoyang Kaiwen Academy.
I believe this special experience will undoubtedly be meaningful for the growth of the children.
They learn to manage their time in the process;I learned teamwork in the process of cooperating with classmates ;They also learned the importance of concentration in face of high-demanding performance;What’s more, they think out the best solution bravely in the face of many difficulties.
We don’t just want to do a musical,
we also want to cultivate global citizens
With the wonderful presentation of the young actors, the musical was gradually pushed to a climax, and the audience was deeply attracted by the beautiful stage scenery and the gorgeous costumes of the students.
“All of our actors’ costumes and stage decorations are made by teachers with recyclable waste.” When the host explained to the audience, the audience could not help feeling surprised.
To achieve this goal, Teacher Jessie spent nearly a month collecting recyclables in the school. She paid attention to the recyclable garbage thrown away by teachers and classmates, and finally the teachers in the art group made amazing props and costumes.
For example, the five-meter-long whale in the play. The body of the fish is mainly made of KT boards with expired posters. The stones on the bottom of the sea are made of foam from the collected packages and The spines on the porpoises are made by the art teachers with the remaining paper in some activities.
Mr. Jessie said, “In fact, we want to use this form to convey a concept to everyone, that is, when a lot of the garbage we produce will flow into the ocean, it will also have a bad impact on the creatures on the seabed. We hope that In this way, we will call on people to protect ocean and become true citizens of the world.”
Of course, we did it in this way not only to protect the environment, but also cultivate children’s sense of responsibility.
Although musicals are an primary school activity, in the process of preparation , students from the secondary school have participated in extracurricular classes named as Service to help the musicals . They went to the drama class to do makeup for the actors. They also joined in art class and helped to layout the stage .
No pains no gains, they made them better ones.
The power of drama
In fact, drama can bring much more than that.
Harry, who just received the offers from the top ten universities in the UK, was recognized by the admission officers as possessing the qualities of “enthusiasm and focus” after participating in a series of drama performance organized by Chaoyang Kaiwen Academy , and that made a good foundation in his further studies in the university.
Coincidentally, Fischer, a grade 3 student who played the leading actor Little Fish, said that he disliked Little Fish when he first got the role. “Because it is small and ugly. But after understanding Little Fish ‘s experience, I think this is a quite inspiring story, because I learned how to be brave.” Fischer said.
James, who plays the manta ray, said that he learned the importance of teamwork in musicals. Terry , a student in grade 5, shared that he became more confident in musical .
“I hope that children can see what others see and understand what others think. This is not simple, but it is necessary,” Che concluded to us, “Life is actually a drama We play a role in it. We focus on drama. In other words, we are trying to teach a kind of art in life. Few people will choose to become professional drama actors, but once they have received a good training in drama, the impact of this memory will last whole life.”
From the ability to express, to the ability of teamwork,and to the cultivation of empathy , all can be developed in the creation of a new drama .
As the main part of the art course in Chaoyang Kaiwen Academy, drama has a unique advantage .
Equipped with an independent black box theater with a capacity of 220 people and a professional large theater with a capacity of 800 people, Kaiwen drama relies on Chinese traditional culture and art and culture from all over the world and introduces global high-quality art education resources, these all support the development and implementation of unique courses in Chaoyang Kaiwen Academy.
By learning drama, children can develop their empathy.It’s not easy, but it’s necessary.
The musical, which integrates communication, performance, coordination and creation, also quietly planted a seed in the hearts of students, took root and sprouted in their growth, that will benefit them for a lifetime.