Goldsmiths successfully wraps up another Musical Theatre Summer School

Musical Theatre Summer School student practices dancing

The Goldsmiths Musical Theatre Summer School 2019 successfully wrapped up in Edinburgh last month, closing with an exciting final showcase performed as part of the Edinburgh Fringe Festival.

In its 4th successful year, the Musical Theatre Summer School, convened by Annie Guo, brings musical theatre enthusiasts from around the world to London to undertake a two-week intensive musical theatre training course, taught by leading industry practitioners. These experts guide the students through a ‘triple-threat’ curriculum, focusing on singing, dancing and acting, and both practical performance skills and industry tips and experience. Alongside this, students had the chance to experience the dazzling West End production of Disney’s Aladdin, seeing these triple-threat skills demonstrated live on stage. Alongside special sessions such as a mock audition to provide practical audition skills, the students’ classes in London saw them learn new songs and dance routines, and prepare for a final showcase arranged and rehearsed in only a few days.

The final leg of their summer school, in Edinburgh, culminated in their live showcase as part of Edinburgh’s Fringe Festival. Here, they got to show off their new skills through a medley of solos, duets and group numbers from a broad range of musical theatre productions, as well as dance pieces demonstrating their newly learnt jazz and tap skills. Following their successful final showcase, the students experienced the eclectic and exciting Fringe Festival, having the chance to see the unique improvised musical production Showstopper.

Commenting on the summer school, Annie Guo noted “as with every year, the students’ progress was remarkable. From a group of enthusiasts and some complete beginners, with the guidance of the course tutors, the students managed to deliver a showcase in Edinburgh that demonstrated just how far they had come over the intensive two-week programme.” She also added, “this is the aim of the summer school programme, to provide the students with an intensive triple-threat based curriculum which can give them practical skills in three key musical theatre areas – singing, dancing and acting.”

Goldsmiths 2019 Summer Camp to China comes to a Close

​Goldsmiths Confucius Institute for Dance and Performance oversaw a 14-day summer camp to China in collaboration with Beijing Dancing Academy and Jiangsu University this July. The excursion formed part of the department’s annual programme of study abroad events that supports students of all disciplines in applying for funded placements to study in China.

This year, 11 students from nine different countries were successfully awarded scholarships to participate in the summer camp. The group was made up of Goldsmiths undergraduate students, short course students (Mandarin and martial arts short courses) and members of the local and wider community.

After an 11-hour long-distance flight, the group touched down in Beijing and stepped straight onto the high-speed train towards Jiangsu province, covering another impressive 819 miles in just 4.5 hours.

Participants split their time between the four cities of Beijing, Shanghai, Zhenjiang and Suzhou in China and had the once in a lifetime opportunity to delve deeper into some intriguing aspects of traditional Chinese culture through a series of cultural activities, excursions and tours.

The students were able to try their hands at Chinese language, Chinese painting, Tai Chi, Peking Opera, Chinese classical, ethnic and folk dance and Chinese calligraphy through cultural classes offered by the host universities.

They also had the rare opportunity to take part in bookbinding and art printing workshops hosted by the Chinese National Museum of Classic Books in Beijing and experience first-hand a Red Theatre Kungfu performance.

A night tour of Xijin ferry, a walk down winding old streets along the Yangtze river, a visit to Shanghai’s impressive Bund and Nanjing Road as well as glimpses of Yuyuan garden, Houhai lake, the Forbidden City and the Ming Dynasty Tombs before stopping off at the Great Wall of China made the trip a memorable and eye-opening experience.

The summer camp to China enabled the students to immerse themselves in the cultural heritage, evolution and development of China by experiencing the delights of local Chinese food, architecture, theatre and art.

For more information on next year’s China Summer Camp, visit the Goldsmiths Confucius Institute Scholarship page.

News: UK-China Theatrical Collaboration Activities – The Injustice to Tou O

Lead actor Ding Yiyeng performs in the unique creative piece The Injustice of Tou O.

This October, with the support of the Confucius Institute Headquarters (Hanban), Goldsmiths Confucius Institute for Dance and Performance were proud to be part of London Southbank Centre’s annual China Changing Festival.

Goldsmiths CI were delighted to have the opportunity to invite some of the most acclaimed figures from China’s theatre scene to the UK for a series of collaborative theatrical events aiming to give members of the local community in London an insight into Chinese experimental theatre.

The series of events were based around the ancient Chinese play, The Injustice to Tou O, creating a fusion of the original Chinese text, contemporary Western philosophy and movements influenced by Chinese Peking Opera.

The original play tells the story of Tou O, a girl abandoned by her father at a young age and eventually framed for a murder she did not commit. When her father returns after years of abandonment, Tou O believes he will come to her aid. However, hope turns quickly to panic as she realises her father has returned only to condemn her to certain death in his capacity as a judge.

Kicking off on 7 October 2018 with a modern adaptation of the play at the Southbank Centre to the audience of more than 400, the opening performance was followed by an evening of collaborative drama workshops and a final performance at Goldsmiths on 8 October 2018.

As part of the final series of activities, performers from Goldsmiths CI gave music, dance and martial arts demonstrations to give a further insight into Chinese performing arts.

The activities were well-received by participants and members of the audience who actively used the post-production Q & A sessions to express their enthusiasm for the play. The series of events enabled Goldsmiths students and local members of the community to gain an insight into Chinese music and drama whilst exploring wider philosophical reflections on society and the human condition.

Goldsmiths Welcomes in the Year of the Monkey!

Goldsmiths Confucius Institute took over the campus for 3 days of Chinese New Year festivities. Celebrations included demonstrations and performances for students in the Great Hall, a Chinese lion dance and drum parade around campus and all finishing with a main performance in Deptford Town Hall.

Performances were from Goldsmiths CI teachers, students and local community coming together to celebrate this 2016 “Year of the Monkey”

Beauty Beyond Words Performed by Beijing Dance Academy

Beijing Dance Academy performs at Goldsmiths

Members of Beijing Dance Academy’s performing troupe performed the Terracotta Warrior Dance

Goldsmiths Confucius Institute for Dance and Performance welcomed its partner university, Beijing Dance Academy on campus to bring their world famous Chinese Dance Performance and Workshop to Goldsmiths, as part of their UK tour.

Performances included group and solo dance pieces from among the best dancers in China along with traditional music and drums, a unique opportunity to watch Chinese Dance and the Arts live in action.

Beijing Dance Academy is a renowned institution of higher education of dance in China.