More than 120 Doha College students perform at
an event to mark UK’s 23rd National Poetry Day
To celebrate UK’s 23rd National Poetry Day, over 120 Doha College students gave their voices in the name of freedom.
Freedom was chosen as the theme for the “2017 Poetry Evening”, and the performances did not disappoint, with power, passion, pageantry and prose.
Students aged 11 to 18 mesmerised the guests with 30 poems including some in Arabic, French, Spanish, German and Italian during the 90-minute event at the Doha College Al Waab auditorium recently.
Doha College Head of English, Clare Fairley explained, “Freedom was undoubtedly a poignant choice this year as we face more uncertain times and tragedies across the world. The poems chosen by our students show the creativity and prose we encourage and support at Doha College.
This annual event is a fantastic platform for our students to perform their favourite poems and readings, each year the students rehearse and study the poetry to be able not only to recite it perfectly on stage but also to be able to bring the words alive and evoke the poet’s emotions within their delivery.”
“Overall, the event is aimed at encouraging all students’ passion for, and enjoyment of, literature and poetry.”
Fairley praised the efforts and commitment of the students, all of whom had gone through an audition to perform during the night. All the poems were chosen by the students, who were free to interpret the chosen theme of Freedom.
“On the night, their job was to captivate the audience, and they certainly achieved that,” Fairley said.
Noteworthy mentions were five Year 8 students, Issa, Harvey, Celia, Hannah and Gabrielle who added clever choreography to their performance of Oh! The Places You’ll Go by Dr Seuss.
Four Year 12 students Fariha, Jan, Alberto and Beatriz also demonstrated their language and musical skills with a rendition of Moustaki’s Ma Liberte in French set to a guitar piece with sung and spoken word.
One of the most powerful and thought provoking drama inspired performances of the evening came from the students studying GCSE drama who performed as a group reciting First They Came by Pastor Martin Niemoller.
A Freedom-themed poetry evening would not be complete without readings from American Civil Rights Activist Maya Angelou’s, and as she famously quoted, “I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”
The audience certainly felt that quote was accurate, and feedback from the guests was very encouraging, according to the college.
“The students made the words come alive; it was so clear they understood the meaning of the poems,” explained Jackson, whose daughter Madeleine from Year 7 was performing at her first poetry evening.
Griffiths, another parent, said, “Adding in the drama performances, choreography and musical pieces make this event a true spectacle and an evening to celebrate the students’ creativity and words. This is my fifth poetry evening, and the choice of poems certainly made you think.”
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