Review: Odyssey at The Hammond School of Dance

Graduate students performing the final song Pic- The Hammond School of Dance

Graduate students performing the final song
Pic- The Hammond School of Dance

LAST year The Hammond School graduates performed a devilishly twisted version of Alice in Wonderland, to a standard that Tim Burton would definitely have approved of!

This year, however was a slightly brighter performance when the musical theatre students took to the stage to perform a medley of songs that represent their three year journey through the school.

The students chose to name their show Odyssey in order to further represent this, with reference to the famous Greek poem, which describes the difficult journey home of a Greek soldier after war.

Natasha Henry, Hammond student said: “We wanted something to represent the journey we have taken through the course, the ups and downs we have had to face, and while it might seem a bit ‘melodramatic’ to compare school to a Greek war, we wanted the emphasis to be on the journey”.

Here the cast delivered numbers such as ‘My Junk’ from Spring Awakening and ‘I sang Summer In Ohio’ from The Last Five Years.

With musical theatre, the true struggle is acting without over-acting, something the young Hammond students seem to be capable of controlling on a professional level.

However, one of two are susceptible to over delivering from time to time and with intensity can come harshness.

But that’s a minor issue surrounded by many charming, and the occasional eye-watering performances.

Alex Hunt, Hammond musical theatre student believes “the show was a fantastic success”.

Explaining that “the main reason for the show was raising money and we raised over £1000 all of which is going towards our agents showcase in London next spring”.

The graduate showcase is an opportunity for the third year students to display a range of talents that they have developed over the course of their three years as a performing arts student.

Yet, the fact that this performance was directed completely by 18-21 year olds is not something that is apparent at face value, as everything from lighting, mis en scene to song choice and order is done to a professional level.

It is, in short, an unusual musical in its stress on pure emotion and personal relevance, and while it may not conform to the musical theatre standard of top names such as “Wicked” or last years “Alice in Wonderland”, it was 100% professionally executed.

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