Creative dancers, courtroom theatrics shine on stage

15 August 2017

Two creative groups of adults with disabilities who attend regular classes at Community College Gippsland successfully performed at the recent 2017 Gippsland Parasteddfod.

They were among many other local adults with disabilities who took up the chance to share their musical, comedic and dramatic talents and entertain others at Exhibition Hall this week. All performers showcased their talents and hard work as part of the event.

Participants' faces lit up as they trod the boards, faced the microphone and wowed a large audience, whose members clapped and sang along with a diverse range of music.

Yooralla participates in Gippsland Parasteddfod 2017

Yooralla Drama Group members who attend classes weekly at CCG take a well-deserved bow at the Gippsland Parasteddfod.

A small group from Yooralla’s Drouin Community Hub attends CCG’s Warragul campus each Friday. They performed their fully costumed courtroom drama 'Friends, Thieves, Burgers and Cars', supported by CCG trainer Michelle Buntine.

The cast selected their music as well as developed the characters and dialogue for the script. Two CCG general education students Tanya Ross and Erica Leonard also assisted the class each week as part of their study unit.

Trainer Michelle Buntine said the drama group responded well to all the challenges of developing their communication skills and theatrical expression.

“They had to adapt to limited stage space and performed well together as an ensemble cast,” she said. “It has been fantastic to watch their progress over the last few months.”

Later in the day, another group of adults with disabilities who attend CCG’s Leongatha campus earned an Encouragement Award with their lively dance act ‘True Colours’.

Participants deftly swirled ribbons and delivered their choreographed moves on stage. They obviously enjoyed performing together after working hard at recent rehearsals under the guidance of CCG's Leongatha Foundation Trainer Tania Bird.

CEO Sue Geals said that overall, the array of talent involved in the Gippsland Parasteddfod this year was fantastic and a credit to all involved.

“What might have been a daunting experience for many was made easier due to the enthusiastic and encouraging response given by supporters, family, and peers,” she said.

“Special thanks for the great behind-the-scenes work at this year's entire Gippsland Parasteddfod program by the organisers, accompanists, sound and stage crew.

“CCG proudly sponsored this year's event and program,” Ms Geals said. “The Yooralla students benefit from an Adult Community and Further Education (ACFE) funded pre-accredited program at CCG - Learn to Communicate.

“This aims to develop each student’s confidence and communication skills through both verbal and non-verbal communication skills as many are unable to express themselves through conventional verbal ways,” she said. “They all gave a super effort on the day.”

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