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    YOU’RE IN THE BAND: Liam Robertson, top, and Oscar O’Brien share the lead role of Dewey Finn in Horsham College’s production of School of Rock. They are pictured with Josie Thomas, who plays Ms Mullins, during a rehearsal.Picture: PAUL CARRACHER

Horsham College students go to the School Of Rock

By Lotte Reiter

Electrifying, hilarious and inspiring are just some of the words cast and crew have used to describe Horsham College’s upcoming production of ‘School of Rock’.

Preparations have been underway since February for the college’s four performances from August 15 to 17 at Horsham Town Hall.

And with less than two months left before students take to the stage, they are preparing to ‘stick it to the man’ and show Wimmera audiences the importance of being true to yourself.

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Director Emily Friedrichsen said the production was an inspiring story of character discovery through the arts and music.

“There is a really strong song called ‘If Only You Would Listen’ where the characters are being pushed by their parents to choose a certain future pathway,” she said.

“But the characters, and the parents, discover there is more to them than their expectations – it is nice to be able to show that you don’t just have to be good at one thing.

“The lead character Dewey is someone who people wouldn’t think is inspiring at first, but he is able to make a difference and motivate the children in unexpected ways.”

Ms Friedrichsen said her students’ passion and discipline inspired her along the way.

“As their teacher, the best thing is that they all have such fantastic organisation skills and communication,” she said.

“We have had cancellations at rehearsals to support those students who are in other productions, but their level of communication makes everything so easy.

“All of the students are very bright and dedicated.”

Liam Robertson and Oscar O’Brien share the lead male role of Dewey, while year-12 student Josie Thomas takes on the female lead, Ms Mullins.

Robertson, one of many cast members to have starred in previous college productions and Horsham Art’s Council musicals, said what made performing and the school’s production special was the opportunity to work with a group of passionate students. 

“What is great about this is the fact we get to do practices twice a week with people who are like-minded and motivated,” he said.

“It can be a struggle to balance everything, especially for the year 12s, but what makes it easy is we are all working together and towards a common goal.”

With tickets now officially on sale, stage manager Jacob Creasey said he was simply excited for audiences to experience an ‘electrifying’ show.

“I think the meaning behind it all is to be true to yourself and who you are deep down inside, and the musical uses rock music to do that,” he said.

“We just want people to have a good time and take away those feelings of hope and happiness from it all.”

People can buy tickets from Horsham Town Hall box office.