Sir Ed You’re a Legend‘s premiere production, with lyrics written by Susan Battye of Drama Magic and music written by Dr Trevor Thwaites of Auckland University, took place on 27 June 2012 at Selwyn College and was directed by Head of Drama Duncan Allan.
Click here to download a brief on Sir Ed You’re a Legend. Sir Ed You’re a Legend Brief 2012
Feedback on the production:
Director Duncan Allan commented:
With exams looming and prizegivings underway, many of us may get the time soon to begin to think about ‘doing it all again’ in 2013. Earlier this year I was given the wonderful opportunity to stage the NZ premiere production of Susan Battye’s exciting new musical play “Sir Ed, You’re a Legend!”. Susan has crafted a truly funny and affectionate docu-drama about Sir Ed with over 20 roles and plenty of opportunities for chorus work.”
“Trevor Thwaites has composed a lively, toe-tapping score giving numerous opportunities for ensemble song and dance numbers. We staged the show in a Brechtian style with our juniors and had over 40 in the cast – but it could just as suitably be done as a challenging multi-role Yr 11 piece of physical theatre. We found the whole process extremely rewarding and loads of fun. Not only did it offer the opportunity to introduce out juniors to documentary drama and Brechtian techniques but also provided a wonderful learning opportunity to study the life of Sir Edmund Hillary.”
If you’re searching for new NZ work for your students in 2013 may I suggest you take a look at “Sir Ed”. Contact Playmarket to read the script, look over the score and listen to the soundtrack, it’s a winner. Duncan Allan, Selwyn College.”
The principal of Selwyn College, Sheryll Ofner, commented:
“It is our pleasure to strongly commend this production to other schools contemplating staging a junior production and I suggest that they take the opportunity to read the script, look over the score and listen to the backing tracks that are available on CD.”
Medbury School Production – Christchurch 2012
Sir ED You’re a legend was performed at Medbury School for boys in Christchurch in 2012. The South Island premiere was directed by Lizzie Cook. The show which opened on 5 September 2012 involved around 170 students.
Lizzie Cook, the director of the Medbury School production asked her students from Years 7 amd 8 about what they now understood from having taken part in the production. The students commented:
A pupil from 7F said: “I got to know more about the history of Sir Ed. It was interesting to see the boys in costume and not acting their own age.”
A pupil from 7W said: “Music is a big part of the story.”
Pupils from 8G said:
Since the production, I understand better “… what sort of person Sir Ed was, how he lived and what sort of family he had.”
“I didn’t realize that Sir Ed was interested in rugby when he was young, like his Dad. I also didn’t know he had a daughter.”
“… that Sir Ed and Tenzing Norgay were not the first to try and climb up Mt Everest. Also, that they were under the British to climb it. “
“… about Sir Ed’s life and all his adventures he has done and leaving University and being a bee keeper.”
“… that Sir Ed made it to the top with help not just by himself.”
Pupils from 8S said:
Since the production, I understand better … “Persevering really pays off in the end.”
“… Sir Ed’s life.”
“… that Sir Edmond Hillary had to endure many hardships.”
Pupils from 8H said:
Since the production, I understand better “ … that he helped in Nepal.”
“… about his childhood.”
“ … that Ed actually got to the top and ate cake while only being up for 10 minutes.”
“I never knew that he went on an expedition to look for yeti.”
Hawea Flat School 12-13 June 2013
Wendy Bamford, Principal of Wanaka Primary School, took time out to see a morning matinee performance of Sir Ed You’re a Legend written by Susan Battye with music by Trevor Thwaites at Hawea Flat School.
Wendy Bamford wrote:
I attended the first performance of Hawea Flat’s production on 12 June 2013. It was a matinee performed at 10.30am. It was fabulous. The script was excellent. The children did so well with learning their words and remembering stage movements. A band of children with about 20 guitars and ukeleles and a couple of recorders and clarinets played the music. The songs were good too.
Teacher, Luke Dyer, provided a projected backdrop of photos that appeared at various stages throughout the production e.g. dole queues and photos of the depression, mountains and photos of Ed. The images were very effective. Sylvia Duff did a great job as director – for a small school that only goes to year 6 they did remarkably well. It was great seeing the whole school take part and to be present around the staged area rather than tucked away back stage.
It is clear that the community is buzzing about Sir Ed You’re a Legend and that they are very proud of their school and their kids. The show was a success!