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03/08/20

If you’re joining our new Year 7 in September, it’s not too late to complete a Transition Workshop. Don’t forget to let us know how you get on! https://t.co/Rf2IIjDL6w

30/07/20

Retweeted From MTW NHS Recruitment and Apprenticeships

Aged 15-19 and in need of some careers guidance? are hosting a FREE VIRTUAL CAREERS FAIR this August! There will be exhibits by & ! Book here ⬇️ https://t.co/2FXfWkQyxf https://t.co/ugmrcfByFI

28/07/20

Retweeted From HeadStart Kent

If you are concerned about a young person’s mental health you can call the Single Point of Access (SPA) ON 0300 1234496. Mental health and emotional wellbeing services are open for children and young people. We are . https://t.co/PfeoNbMwBW https://t.co/l8iy5de1Sr

28/07/20

We are sorry to hear that. The link was in the last letter of term and the survey is now closed. However, if you email our Manager account we can send you the direct link via email.

24/07/20

Woody hopes you’re enjoying the summer break as much as he is... Thanks to everyone who has completed our end of term surveys, we will be using your responses to plan our future developments. https://t.co/PwZE66ugCs

23/07/20

Well done, Mia! What beautiful 🦋- drawn by hand and electronically. We hope you had fun with this https://t.co/aV8f0iTH2A

23/07/20

Miss Collins has been busy creating a display of Memory Boxes, based on an Art project from last term. What would you put in yours? https://t.co/MNINk01Pxj

22/07/20

Retweeted From Kent Music

🚨 Submissions for our virtual Open Mic close at midnight TONIGHT! 🚨 If you're a young musician looking to share your music with the world, visit our website now to submit your piece for our virtual festival: https://t.co/GN6Bz1JYGF https://t.co/8EaPJTEwkb

22/07/20

Don’t forget, our end of year survey for parents and carers closes tomorrow. Tell us how the year has been! https://t.co/lpXnENOcrW

21/07/20

Retweeted From Kent Music

Are you an intermediate DJ? Join Seb in our virtual masterclass on 30th July as he shows you how to create a mini-mix with 10 of your own tracks, and guides you through different DJ techniques! 🎚️🎧 There are only six places - claim your spot now here: https://t.co/QgrprDFGwU https://t.co/r14GVCcxsz

20/07/20

It sounds fabulous!

20/07/20

Inspired by our Live Lounge event last week? 🎵 🎶 🎵 Want some musical entertainment and challenge over the summer break? Why not join in Day and Night Virtual Festival? More details on this brilliant event at: https://t.co/DRqar0K4ps https://t.co/YbU4tZbBoG

18/07/20

Well done, Hannah. This looks absolutely delicious! 😋 https://t.co/jABW5hNAb5

18/07/20

Thank you! We’re very proud of the Virtual Choir - and this is beautiful!

17/07/20

Have a safe and happy summer everyone! https://t.co/LKgms09o5n

17/07/20

Retweeted From NHS England and NHS Improvement

Congratulations Sir ! It's a privilege to share this moment with you — and wonderful to see the recognition of your contribution to our country and . 🎖️ 💙 https://t.co/3XkiNu8pWJ

16/07/20

The Valley Park Virtual Choir have done it again! Here's their new video: https://t.co/mXaCZfZOcz - and if that isn't enough for you, tune in at 2pm when the VVP Live Lounge goes, well, live! https://t.co/vnaKbbcG4h https://t.co/3skjbCcz43

15/07/20

Retweeted From Speakers for Schools

It's time! Meet ÑO at 2pm TODAY. She will share her environmental engineer career and the kind of work she’s involved in with the company’s carbon ambitions. TUNE IN HERE NOW: https://t.co/EjfdpNzakm https://t.co/H6mAWKYRW9

15/07/20

There's a new computer science workshop on our Year 6 transition page. It shows you how to make a simple computer program. Have a go! https://t.co/8GstEnLJAT

15/07/20

Calling all students! Our end of year survey launches today - you have until the end of the day Friday to feed back to us on how this year has gone. Check your inbox for the link! 📝 https://t.co/igoGaj5NVs

13/07/20

The final blog of the [academic] year... https://t.co/2BB8hEG4En https://t.co/ulHMxaQpi2

13/07/20

It’s Sixth Form Induction this week! https://t.co/ZCmLPEBux5

12/07/20

This is really beautiful! Well done!

12/07/20

- What are you waiting for? https://t.co/Pc7g23XU1s

12/07/20

Some fascinating speakers coming up... https://t.co/dtm5pplB1A

12/07/20

Mr Moore, you know what to do if you have any leftovers, don’t you? Cannot wait to see all our students’ creations 😋 🍰 https://t.co/7Dv75X7dk1

11/07/20

- With 2 days to go, it's time for the classic double take... https://t.co/lwbaYM6m8i

10/07/20

It’s Race Night at Virtual VP! Can you believe that 7K has Usain Bolt running for them? Find out your form’s performance at https://t.co/SDoKnx3aH2 - good luck! 🏃🏾‍♂️🏃🏃‍♀️ https://t.co/Tro0NOi2uP

10/07/20

- is Mr Fuller singing? https://t.co/fJhb0F8zqN

09/07/20

Retweeted From Alzheimer's Society

Alzheimer's Society's programme aims to change the way we think, act and talk about dementia, to make the world a dementia-friendly place for people affected by the condition. Visit https://t.co/LGXii0Oqxi to become a today! https://t.co/7Z5gvhZGdV

09/07/20

Good luck, Year 6!

09/07/20

Well done, Hannah, this looks just the thing for the end of long day! 👍 https://t.co/tB0fpoVQmA

09/07/20

- Mr Sargent is retaining his cool... https://t.co/d6peLlzLd9

08/07/20

5 days to go and Mr Smith is losing it... https://t.co/chmH8lWlhi

08/07/20

On Friday 10 July at 10am, the Prime Minister will be giving an address to all school leavers which will be broadcast on Facebook and YouTube. https://t.co/xI2XfgzFmF

08/07/20

Are you in Year 12 and applying to become a prefect? We are looking forward to reading your application... 🤞 https://t.co/w0AwOWpdeH

07/07/20

Thank you! 😊 This was such a lovely project!

07/07/20

Back in the Easter break, Keyworker Hub children worked with Ms Collins to create forget-me-not mementoes of this unique time. Now they have been turned into a commemorative display - how beautiful these ceramics look! https://t.co/Ull0wy7PG5

07/07/20

Ooooh, delicious! Well done Tiarna, this looks so good! https://t.co/3sCZb66dSD

07/07/20

...and we hope you like it... https://t.co/eQ1bUoQOuC

Zorro

Our production of Zorro was the UK amateur premiere, which originally debuted in London’s West End in June of 2008, receiving rave reviews. Zorro, ‘the fox’, was created in 1919 by Johnston McCulley for his novel ‘The Curse of Capistrano’. It was the first of 65 immensely popular tales in which Zorro fought injustice in Spanish California’s Pueblo de Los Angeles. 

Since then, Zorro has appeared in films, TV shows, plays, ballets, operas, novels & comic books, and this musical version retells the dramatic story with spectacular sword-fighting and incredible magic – all set to the famous red-hot Gipsy King beat brought to the stage with the authentic colours of traditional flamenco.

One of the challenging parts of Zorro was staging the sword-fights, with students who had no real experience. Fortunately, we had the capable sword-arm of fight director Gary Andrews, who came in on three occasions to teach students the art of sword-fighting for the stage...

Swordfighting workshop016

Five-Point System

Gary Andrews, who has been directing fights at schools and theatres for around 20 years, assessed the students’ ability by teaching them the footwork, guard positions, attacks and parries that make up basic fencing. He then taught them the basic five point numbering system used to annotate moves. 

‘Each part of the body corresponds with a number so it makes instruction a lot more accurate,’ said Craig Barden, who plays Ramon in our production. ‘It helped me find confidence in my ability and fluency in my technique.’

‘The system goes clockwise around the body,’ explained Mr Andrews. ‘The right leg is number 1, right shoulder is 2, head is 3, left shoulder is 4 and left leg is 5. So, if I say “attack 2,1,2,4,3” the actors know the sequence and target of the attacks - and defences!’

Replicas

Students were lucky enough to use Mr Andrew’s professional sword replicas, which helped them get into character.

‘Apart from fighting imaginary monsters in my childhood with a plastic sword, I had never done any sword-fighting before,’ said Harry Harding, who plays Diego De La Vega. ‘It was a thoroughly enjoyable experience which gave me an idea how heavy the swords would be when we do the show.’

Tricks

Each fight was choreographed taking into account the ability of the characters (Zorro is an expert, the soldiers are less competent) and the story the fight should tell: is it an easy victory, a comical action sequence or a dramatic showdown? 

‘We also take into account where the audience is,’ said Mr Andrews, ‘so we show the fight from the best angle to hide all the tricks we use to make it seem real!’

Adrenaline 

After plenty of practice at half-speed, students found the fight movements becoming more automatic, so they increased their ‘performance speed’ to about 75%.  

‘This is usually fast enough for an audience seeing the fight for the first time,’ added Mr Andrews, ‘but performance adrenaline usually adds another 15% or so!’

Muscle Memory

‘Having practiced the sequences many times,’ said Harry, ‘my muscle memory knows what to do when we fight so I feel very prepared. Mr Andrews was an excellent teacher and he was very laid back when we made mistakes.’

Not a Good Look

‘When I was eight I used to play sword fighting with my cousin,’ said Craig, ‘which resulted in me sustaining an eye injury. Not a good look! Luckily this experience taught me how to get sword fighting right without being an idiot this time!’

Tweak

Mr Andrews paid a further two visits to Valley Park. ‘I usually come back a week or two before the show opens,’ he said, ‘to polish the fight and make sure no bad habits have developed – or to tweak any moves that are not quite working.’

Focused

‘I can honestly say that your students were amongst the politest, keenest and most able I have taught,’ said Mr Andrews. ‘They were quick learners and very focused, and I’m sure that this will lead to a really great show.’