Roaming drama unlocks school’s underground of memories

Wed, 12 Jun 2019

Drama students utilised the beautiful spaces and buildings at their school to create a stunning and original live production.

The pupils at Monmouth School for Girls flourished under the guidance of renowned Cardiff-based writer-director and creator of performance, Firenza Guidi.

The students explored a century of history seen through the memories and antics of a group of young girls in 15 Doors – underground of memory.

Firenza specialises in site-specific performance and has created scores of performances in Europe, India, USA and Cuba.

Assisted by Mr David Murray and Jimmy Garlick, she ran a series of workshops during her two-day visit to Monmouth.

The weekend culminated in an evening performance of 15 Doors for an audience of parents and friends.

Firenza explained: “When I visited the school for the first time and stood in the piazza looking at the back of the building, I saw faces appearing at the windows.

“Monmouth School for Girls became a co-player and a site of narrative. The audience became co-players and quietly entered the rear door.

“They followed the young performers through many other doors, leading both actors and spectators to a shared underground of memory.”

Year 7 pupil, Zoe, said: “I enjoyed doing the scenes all around the school. It was a very good and different experience. I learnt that not everything needs to tell a story.”

Ms Jodie Knight, Head of Drama at Monmouth School for Girls, who organised the event, said: “The weekend was a fantastic experience for all the girls involved.

“It was wonderful to see students aged from 11 to 18 years collaborate on an immersive and original piece of theatre.

“Firenza’s work creates an exhilarating and provoking experience in which the creative process is performance and the audience become an eye-witness to a constantly evolving product.

“We were thrilled that Firenza found time in her hectic schedule to work with us.”