“It’s an opportunity to get together with hundreds of people who all love the same thing! We get to be in a bubble of creativity and share each others work,” Christine Knight, Carihi’s senior drama teacher, says about the North Island Regional Drama Festival.
Around 200 students from 13 schools, from Ladysmith to Port Hardy, came to Campbell River Feb. 22-23 to participate in the festival as a part of the Association of BC Drama Educators.
Students participate in workshops throughout the day to expand their knowledge in performing arts as well as the technology aspects. Ultimately, they pick up useful tips from regional professionals excited about passing on their experience. This year highlight workshops included mask work with Tina Biello, Intro to Clown Play with Priscilla Costa, improvisation with Graham Myers and Stage Combat with Robinson Wilson. Other workshops available included lighting, stage-managing, voice, character developing, and the wildly popular Broadway dancing with Carihi’s own Lisa Marie Thompson.
In the evening, the students gathered at the Timberline Theatre to watch plays competing to show at provincials. This year, 13 plays were showcased over the course of three nights, ranging between student written, zombie themed, to classic theatrical portrayals, all varied in theatre styles.
“It’s special to drama kids, because for three days they get to be with other people who understand their world and support them in the theatrical work they do,” Knight says. “In some schools ‘drama kids’ are marginalized, so Drama Fest is great for making everyone feel welcome, included and appreciated. “The magic and intensity of the North Island Regional Drama Fest is something difficult to describe without using the words “immense support, appreciation, and love.”