On the 7th of March, 2019, the Secondary School was happy to welcome the Backyard Theatre Ensemble (BYTE) to perform for its students. BYTE are an independent theatre company dedicated to devising and producing issue-based works. They have been touring nationally throughout Australia and the world for many years.
BYTE presented their current touring work, "What country friends is this?", to the Grade 10 English and Theatre students and Grade 11 Theatre students. This comical piece was presented on a bare stage with an ensemble of four actors. The audience was enchanted by the powers of a modern troubadour and the different Shakespearean stories of Hamlet, Romeo and Juliet, Much Ado About Nothing and Twelfth Night, as they were intertwined through the use of theatrical devices into a single piece of theatre.
The characters were fun and relatable. Juliet (Olivia Smith) is bored and stuck in the middle of crossroads, between getting married and settling down to a home, or falling in love and being young again with the adventurous Cesario/Viola (Casey Bohan). Helena (Anna Lyons), like most of us today, is struggling with the influential pressure of social media and relationships, adapted themes that are relatable to both Shakespearean times and today. Ophelia (Megan Mitchell) is desperate for acknowledgement of any kind and finds the constant need to post to social media, of which many of us can relate. The Backyard Theatre Ensemble delivered this fun, original and inventive piece of theatre to an attentive audience who experienced how Shakespeare's work can still be relevant and comical in today's society. Thank you for visiting our school BYTE, we hope to see you again in the future.