What a great start to the year! BRC goes to Lion King!
KS3 and KS4 students were treated to a late evening of magical theatre fun at the West End’s Lion King production at the 200 year old Lyceum Theatre.
Just from the opening scene, everyone was amazed by the sounds and the colours. We all know the Lion King story and we were not disappointed in how the actors portrayed it on stage. They were spot on; they danced, sang, joked and thoroughly entertained us. We had great seats and some students were brave enough to ask for binoculars so they could see the actors and the set in detail. They were provided with many pairs that each of them had the chance to benefit!
Despite the torrential downpour on their journey, this outing was a success on all fronts, as the students also experienced the vibrant Covent Garden at night, interacted with the public and navigated their way back home safely. Everyday since, the students have been asking when another trip will take place. Thumbs up to engagement!
On Saturday 14th May, students from Year 10 took advantage of another opportunity to see live sports. This time, it was at the massive O2 Arena in North Greenwich, home to many concerts and big sporting events. They saw the 2023 British Basketball Play Off Finals; two top teams from the elite men’s and women’s British Basketball League battling it out for the final piece of silverware on offer during the 2022-23 BBL & WBBL seasons, in what is one of the most prestigious and special trophies on offer in the sport.
The matches were exciting and there was a lot of entertainment around, from competitions outside, to cheerleaders, the upbeat music and they also had a KissCam which is when the camera films the audience, zones in on two people and displays them on the big screen with a virtual heart around them, enticing the audience to shout, “Kiss Kiss Kiss”. Needless to say, our students had their heads down.
London Lions were crowned the winners and had a ceremony with magical sparkling green glitter falling from above.
“It was far but easy to get to because we just took the one train all the way from Wembley Park to North Greenwich”
“I’ve heard about this place but never been here, it is massive. It’s got shops, cinema and all the food places”
“The matches were good, the players are very talented”
“I saw people climbing over the building, so I think we should organise a trip to do that.”
On the afternoon of Thursday 11th May, BRC students from both KS3 and KS4 were treated to a magical experience in the heart of theatre-land; Covent Garden, to see the theatre production of the much loved cartoon, FROZEN.
The outing started a bit on the dull side due to the rain spoiling our trip as we navigated through the bustling tourists from the tube station to the theatre but once we arrived, we were impressed by how grand the theatre was with expensive couches, chandeliers, paintings and red carpet everywhere. There were little princesses all around as the theatre goers consisted of toddlers dressed up as their heroes making it even more of an experience.
The songs were brilliant and our students joined in the singing. They were jumping at the dramatic sound effects, in particular when Elsa accidently used her magic and large sharp icicles smashed through the castle walls. The performances engaged the students and they were hooked to the stage being taken through mixed emotions and audience interaction.
Although some wouldn’t admit it, maybe trying to play it cool, it could be seen that they all loved every bit of the experience.
Here are some quotes…
“I love having the afternoon off school to go on a trip”
“We need to return to the West End as there is a lot to see”
“The effects were really good and we jumped a few times”
“It was just like the cartoon which was a surprise because this was real people on stage”
“I wasn’t singing but the others were”
“I bought an expensive blue drink and it was the best drink ever!”
On Thursday 11th May KS4 girls were treated to a double experience. After the theatre (Frozen) they ventured out in Covent Garden to find Living the Dream, the UK Black Female Photographers exhibition that proudly presents a group exhibition of a vibrant and diverse community of amateur and professional photographers of all levels.
This took place at FUJIFILM House of Photography an experiential store in the heart of Covent Garden by Fujifilm. It is a store center based around all things photo related that celebrates every element of picture taking, picture making and sharing photos
With Living the Dream, 51 image makers pay tribute to inspirational women, and supportive men, from past and present and aspire to stimulate next generations.
We were lucky to have caught this exhibition in its last few days. The girls were visibly inspired by being in a creative, professional, technology-induced environment dedicated just for them, by people that look like them and with subjects relevant to them.
They viewed pieces by:
Aicha Thomas, a freelance film photographer, based in London, striving to increase the representation of Black people through her art.
Amaani Oluwa – her project is a photo series presenting that there is nowhere else you need to be, you are who you are regardless and right where you belong
Angella Mofondo a London based family photographer with a project called She Can, capturing natural, relaxed moments of family life from Maternity to new-born to at-home-documentary sessions as well as quality family time.
April Alexander with her portrait that illustrates three states of being; Surrender, Resistance and Freedom – an artistic depiction of the constant fight for self-ownership of womanhood.
And many more.
The girls really appreciated this additional outing detour.
“We didn’t know what we were being taken to and then we were here with all these vibrant photos all around us”
“I read alot of the stories and was inspired because myself and people I know share the same experiences”
“I saw a Fuji Polaroid camera and remembered that I have one of my own. I am going to use it this weekend”
Brent River College students enjoyed an FA Cup semi-finals match on their doorstep, Wembley Stadium, England’s national stadium. Many of the students are avid football fans so this was an opportunity not to be missed; the Premiership champions Manchester City versus Sheffield United. It was a lovely day for the match which saw Manchester City sail through to win the match 3 nil with a hat-trick from Riyad Mahrez.
Students were happy to not have had to travel too far. Most of them had never been to a football match before and some aren’t even football fans, so this was a great experience for them which they will remember.
“I can’t believe I got to see one of my heroes, Erling Haaland!”
“We had some good seats so we could see all the action”
Over the Easter holiday, Brent River College engaged our students in a series of activities and trips. They took part in Music, Cooking, Multisport, Table Tennis, Puzzles, Art – with an Easter theme, and we had fun at Flip Out Jumping Adventure Park , 4D Cinema and Arch Climbing Wall. These were great experiences for our young people with two of these being quite new to them. They enjoyed the climbing so much that they didn’t want to leave! We also took part in online educational sessions run by 100 Black Men of London charity. Sessions included a talk with a Black Met Police Officer and Young people’s Careers advice. This was delivered over the Zoom platform and so our students were able to interact by asking questions through the chat function.
“They were playing some old tunes that my dad plays and I know them so I was singing and dancing in my seat”
“The issues they [the characters] had were very real and it made me think, for e.g. when the boy’s dad did not tell him about his illness, when they had the fight in club and the boy got stabbed and lost his life, when he got stopped and searched by police and when they talked about the girls that they met.”
“The actors were very talented as they could sing, rap, dance and make everyone laugh.”
“It was sad when the boy was stabbed and made me think about some of the fights I get into”
BRC students were edutained (educated and entertained) by the fantastic cast of FOR BLACK BOYS Who Have Considered Suicide When The Hue Gets Too Heavy consisting of six Black men telling the story of their lives from boyhood to manhood. The quotes above, taken from the students’ reviews, show how the many issues tackled in the play are so relevant to our young people. There was joy and pain, positivity and negativity leading to a greater understanding of life from a Black boy/man’s perspective. There was something for everyone touching the hearts of all in the audience causing laughter, jeering, gasps and acknowledgements.
The school is also proud of our students for representing so well, especially our year 8 student who found the seats very uncomfortable but endured it until the end. In some scenes they were observed leaning forward as if they were a part of the performance, as they took in the dialogue. This play sparked some “real” open conversation on the journey home and is recommended for all to see.
This was another great experience for our students as many of them have never been to a theatre before so this was a new experience making it all the more great!
BRC students were treated to another thrilling sports match which again saw the home side unfortunately defeated but holding their heads high from a magnificent performance. There were many lead changes that saw each team go into the lead just for the other team to overtake again. There were 3-pointers, rebounds and assists.
Most of the students had never been to a live match before and soaked up the atmosphere. Some of the students were not even into basketball but realised that live events can be so entertaining.
“The game was intriguing… the trip in general was phenomenal”
”I enjoyed when one of the players slam dunked and held onto the rim”
Yes, it’s not a typo but a different take on one of Shakespeare’s classics, Romeo and Juliet; what if Juliet didn’t commit suicide???
Our students were entertained by this production on Wednesday 8th March at the Shaftsbury Theatre in the West End. The twist had them laughing, gasping, booing and cheering as many modern day issues were tackled making it an inclusive educational experience.
“The best bit was when Romeo and Juliet got back together but didn’t really get back together.”
“I liked the dancing and the singing.”
“I thought it was going to be about the normal story but was surprised with all the twists!”
Over the February Half term holiday, we ran a programme of activities and trips for our lovely BRC students. They took part in Cooking, Multisport, Table Tennis, Puzzles, Art – with a Valentine’s theme….! And we had fun at Ten Pin Bowling, Flip Out Jumping Adventure Park and Pop Golf.
It was a very successful week with lots of fun had by all involved (The staff too!).