Celebrating the successes and achievements of our students and societies here at Aberystwyth University
The Adaptability and Resilience Award was created this year as a one-off award. It is there to celebrate the adaptability and resilience shown by our groups as a result of changing circumstances. This included finding innovative and creative ways of doing activities, utilising new technologies, and adapting to alternative ways of engaging their members. Vitally it was also there to recognise groups who were determined to support their members throughout the year, overcoming setbacks along the way. Overall, the panel really looked for groups who actively maintained their core purpose in the activities they provided.
The society winner of this award was Curtain Call, our musical theatre society. Curtain Call strives to provide all students the opportunity to perform and experience musicals from every angle, including seeing shows, performing full-scale musicals, and their infamous showcases. All alongside creating a vibrant social community through their regular socials.
Like all our performance groups, they have been significantly impacted by the restrictions presented during the past year. All performance groups have been limited by restrictions imposed on indoor activities, as well as the additional restrictions placed on singing in groups. Even when indoor activities were able to go ahead, the limits on numbers and social distancing meant their rehearsals and performances were still near enough impossible to do in-person.
Despite this the committee were creative and resilient, managing to adapt along the way. At their core they are a performance group, an activity that does not easily lend itself to virtual means. Yet with their great work and determination, they managed to persevere and have members participate regardless. The society still hosted their weekly rehearsals via Microsoft Teams, and still managed to offer their members the valuable opportunity to perform in various showcases throughout the year.
Alongside members’ individual entries of small groups, duets and solos, the society also produced whole company group numbers featuring solos, group singing and group dance – just like they would at a normal showcase. Everyone filmed their solos and own parts of group numbers themselves, then the committee, having to learn new skills around video editing, brought them all together into their respective showcases.
Just like the committee, members also had to adapt to new ways of doing things, overcoming obstacles such as delays through video calls when rehearsing, and many had to self-direct and utilise new technology to record their performances. Members noted how much joy they felt; feeling like they managed to achieve something despite being in lockdown restrictions.
Throughout the whole academic year, the society has managed to put on three showcases, all of which can be watched below…
‘Musicals We’ll Never Do’ Showcase
In addition to their showcases, the society actively got involved in first Arts Festival organised by the SU. You can see all the fantastic performances from their members here.
Alongside their core activities of musical theatre and performance, the society hosted fortnightly socials, all with their own individual fun and creative themes. The society prided themselves on offering these socials as a relaxed, welcoming, and friendly opportunity for members to connect on a different level outside of the usual rehearsals and performances.
Additionally, as part of offering developmental opportunities to their members, the committee arranged two musical theatre workshops with industry professionals through Mindful Movers. The first being a West End Workshop themed around Mean Girls, and the second being a Hamilton Workshop. These workshops allowed members to learn dance routines to their favourite musicals. On top of this, as a new addition for this academic year, the committee introduced stretch classes every week as a way for members to engage even further with the society.
Despite the many constraints, the committee have been determined and organised to provide the best for their members. Keeping individuals engaged, entertained, and connected throughout the lockdowns was key for the society, especially for their members mental health. Everyone at the SU look forward to what Curtain Call will get up to in the upcoming academic year!
Why not get involved yourself? Check out Curtain Call here: