Victorian students set to shine this September!

The 2022 Victorian State Schools Spectacular (VSSS) makes an exciting and highly anticipated return to the stage for the first time in three years for two shows on Saturday 10 September 2022 at John Cain Arena.

After being cancelled last year and being a virtually-produced, made-for-television performance in 2020 due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, this year 3000 students from over 200 Victorian government schools will be returning to the stage for a live arena performance.

The Victorian State Schools Spectacular is a proud tradition in government schools and offers students the opportunity to take part in an extravaganza involving music, dance, giant puppetry, skating, acrobatic and circus acts to be performed to an audience of thousands on Saturday 10 September, and later watched by thousands more on television.

“Participating students get to experience something very few professionals get to do; perform in an arena and for a TV broadcast”, commented the Creative Director, Neil Gladwin.

“Talented vocalists and musicians will perform songs from artists such as The Beatles, Dua Lipa, Stan Walker and Kate Bush in this year’s Spectacular with the celebratory theme: Time to Shine.”

The Principal Vocalists, Principal Dancers, 50 piece orchestra, Backing Vocalists, Victorian State Schools Choir, and 1200 mass dance and 750 mass choir students are joined this year by the following speciality acts: the Pasefika Choir, who gave a mesmerising performance in their debut in 2019, returns even bigger and better with 40 students from Narre Warren P-12 College, Monterey Secondary College, Lyndhurst Secondary College, Cranbourne West Secondary College and Hampton Park Secondary College involved.

There will be daredevil skaters, skipping teams, acrobats, hip-hop dancers from Hoppers Crossing Secondary College and a Haka specially created for the Spectacular involving both male and female students from Narre Warren South P-12 College, Hallam Secondary College, Tarneit Senior College and Cranbourne West Secondary College. Audiences will have the chance to see paintings by indigenous children from Woori Yallock Primary School in the form of a giant projection to take over the stage at John Cain Arena. Circus makes a welcome return with students, including those from Camp Hill Primary School in Bendigo who have an in-circus training program, entertaining the audience.

Throughout the year participating primary and secondary school students work with industry professionals across a number of disciplines as part of the preparation and performance of the Spectacular including: Creative Director Neill Gladwin (Edinburgh Perrier Award winner); Musical Director Chong Lim AM (Musical Director on Dancing with the Stars, John Farnham); Dance Director Deon Nuku, (Scooby Doo, Happy Feet, Moulin Rouge); Associate Dancer Director Yvette Lee, (Dancing with the Stars, X-Factor Australia, So You Think You Can Dance); PRG for lighting and rigging; Mediatec for camera; and Norwest Group for Audio.

Since its inception in 1995, the Victorian State Schools Spectacular has been helping students to get hands-on training and mentoring both on stage – as singers, dancers and performers – and behind the scenes in audio, lighting, video production, stage management, costume, and hair and make-up. The students working behind the scenes are integral to the show’s success on the night and participate in workshops over several months in preparation.

The Spectacular supports the Victorian Government’s Education State targets of more students reaching the highest level of achievement in the arts; ensuring kids are happy, healthy and resilient, and building pride in their schools. The Spectacular will be broadcast on television at a later date.

Presented by the Department of Education and Training, the 2022 Victorian State Schools Spectacular is a not-to-be-missed event for all families, with tickets available from Ticketek.

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