As part of the GCSE Edexcel Drama course, all participating students in years 10 and 11 visited the Chichester Festival Theatre on Thursday 3 November to view, analyse and evaluate Jonathan Kent’s interpretation of Sweeney Todd.
Stephen Sondheim’s compelling musical of corruption and revenge, laced with characteristically brilliant wit and dark humour, tells of Sweeney Todd's return to London after years of false imprisonment, and his savage quest for justice and retribution. Aided by the pie-shop owner, Mrs Lovett, he sets out to avenge the wrongs done to him and his family many years before.
The evening was full of enjoyment for all staff and students who attended, with a fantastic response to the production. The all-star cast, including Michael Ball and Imelda Staunton, did not disappoint - not only with the vocal and acting ability, but by using their intense narrative performance style, they were able to draw the audience in and take us on their journey through the dark alleys of Fleet Street.
The set and lighting design were a highlight to the production and an element that certainly impressed the students. The transformation of the performance space and the intricate details to the set with its many vaults, passageways and underground cellars helped bring the Victorian London setting to life.
A memorable evening of a spine-tingling story that will stay with its audience for a long while.
Students’ comments on Sweeney Todd:
"I loved Sweeney Todd because I thought it was very different from anything that I have ever seen……a production that I will remember forever.”
"I really liked the gothic comedy style……very different and interesting. I loved all the songs and had them in my head for weeks!”
"….it’s definitely encouraged me to go see more like this.”
"It was brilliant, one of the best plays I’ve ever seen, it had great songs and a good storyline that kept you interested.”
"Sweeney Todd was great. It had an amazing macabre vibe. The sound effects were brilliant. Fantastic.”
"Sweeney Todd was amazing - it was such a highly polished performance and I’m so glad I got the opportunity to see it. To get to see a professional acting company perform as part of your GCSEs was brilliant. I definitely don’t regret choosing Drama as one of my options.”