Follow Us

Events (Click for calendar)

Hire Our Facilities

The Grey Area – A Review

July 16th, 2012

After a long day at work, which included commuting back to the school in the pouring rain, I was privy to the most amazing piece of theatre.

The prelude to such a provocative piece, which the audience truly enjoyed, was drama club and a young man with a dream.

The director/writer- Tahmid Chowdhury- ran a very professional setup from the offset, showing maturity beyond his years. The first session of drama club was a forum for all to share ideas. The outcome of this was an innovative script that focussed on age old issues from a contemporary perspective.

When I first read the script, I was rather sceptical. I was a little unsure how the audience would react to a heartbreak scene before they had even the opportunity to meet the star-crossed lovers.

However, the execution was beyond expectation. The audience gasped when the lead actress Lucy broke Tariq’s heart. This tension was felt, with my extremities becoming numb at how poignant the scene was.

The following scene struck an excellent balance between humour and the serious issue of a father expounding his prejudices to his child.

Charlie Diver’s portrayal of Lucy’s father was fabulous. Watching someone who is just 16 years old, take on the role of an elder, and deliver this so well, had me in awe. I had seen Charlie in the earlier rehearsals, in which his talent was there for all to see. I really could not be more impressed on the night, watching a master at work, his stage presence a real marvel.  

One point worth mentioning is how quickly the director managed to get his cast to learn lines. Regrettably, three key performers, including the main couple, were forced to pull out of the play due to unforeseen circumstances. Tahmid took on the role of Tariq, which is not the easiest part to play. Mr Chowdhury now has the experience of writing, directing and acting in plays; a very talented young-man.

The lead actress, Andreia, showed talent in her portrayal of Lucy, putting her own mark on the character. She did not let the play down and was in fact a more realistic depiction of a lovelorn 17 year old than we had seen in previous rehearsals. Andreia took on the role at short notice but she really was excellent as Lucy, creating the tension for heartbreak with her callous but tangibly indignant manner.

Abdul-Rahman’s entry to the play in the final act, as Tyrone, had the audience in stiches. His pronunciation of “crisp”, along with his soft character when discussing the potato snack, was the antithesis of his physical appearance, which was coupled with an aggressive tone in his introduction. His handling of Jesse, year 11’s Francis Antwi, was painful for us to watch. Francis’ hero-worship of Tyrone was difficult viewing; poor Jesse.

We were very fortunate to also have a steadfast actress named Corrina Suri who joined the play on day one, travelling all the way from her classes at Woodhouse College. Her role was an excitable teenager who has a tendency to be OTT. Her character-Lindsey’s introduction brought a huge cheer from the audience. Excellent acting, with a fabulous singing voice displayed great talent.

Malcolm Atobrah, the narrator, was another that showed real star quality. A number of the audience agreed with my immediate thoughts; Malcolm is like a young Denzel Washington. His delivery was “so cool”. The strut and swagger, definitely that of a confident actor. He avoided an overt expression of the lines, but yet still delivered the important narrative to a wonderful story. We loved the narrator!

Billy Parsons’s cameo as Lucy’s brother is worth mentioning. Billy was another member of the cast that was introduced later on. He played his role in creating an excellent piece.

I feel that this, Tahmid Chowdhury’s most recent play, has developed into his best. The crowd was in sync with Tahmid’s vision of producing a serious but still humorous piece of theatre. Tahmid and the sixth form team did not let us down.

A special mention must be made of the crew, which included Baris Belkiran as the camera man, and Waseem “Yusuf Labib” Al-Abdulla with the lighting; excellent teamwork from our outstanding sixth form.

The Grey Area managed to demonstrate the best and worst of life. Sadly, I feel that this story of extraction will unfortunately resonate in society, at some level, forever; unless we all change.

Review by Mr Bang

Tahmid Chowdhury- Director/writer

Tahmid Chowdhury-Tariq
Andreia Sousa- Lucy (Winchmore School)
Malcolm Atobrah- Narrator
Charlie Diver- Dad
Billy Parsons- Lucas (Lucy’s brother)
Corrina Suri- Lindsay (Woodhouse College)
Abdul Abdulla- Tyrone
Francis Antwi- Jesse

On 11th July at 7pm, guests crowded into the main hall to enjoy an evening of dance and drama. The audience were treated to a variety of creative routines including; extracts from a variety of plays, dance performances and music.

The talent on show did not just shine through the performances but the production itself, as many of the pieces  were written and performed by the students themselves. ‘Reme’s Rap’ was composed and performed by Reme Rodgers, ‘Frankenstein’s Monster’, an impressive monologue, was written and performed by James Jani, ‘A Milli’ by Lil’ Wayne’ was choreographed and danced by the Central Foundation Dance Crew and ‘The Grey Area’ was written and directed by Tahmid Chowdhury, who also starred in the story as Tariq. The Evening of Dance and Drama was produced by Nicola Brunton, Head of Drama who even danced with the team for ’Work It Out’ and is already looking forward to next years’ show.

“This was my first production at Central Foundation Boys’ School and I was so proud of the boys and their achievements, given the short amount of time to rehearse everything and the  variety of what was included; ballet, street dance, rap, singing and Drama,  it’s made me very excited to think about what we can do next year…Watch this space! Many thanks to Stephen Parsons, Charles Melvin and Tahmid Chowdhury for all their help behind the scenes and a massive well done to all the performers.”

Nicola Brunton, Head of Drama.

“The evening showcased the wonderful and varied talents of pupils at the school and was an absolute joy to watch. From singing to street dance, to writing and performing their own plays, the boys showed true originality and creativity from Year 7 right through to the Sixth Form. The performances were truly impressive and it was obvious the boys had really enjoyed taking part; they should all be very proud of themselves!”

Catherine Lough, English Teacher

Newsletter Issue 5

July 3rd, 2012

Newsletter Issue 5 is now available to read here.

This month’s issue, focusing on primary to secondary transition includes:

  • Getting into the Olympic Spirit with Hanover Primary
  • A School for Superheroes
  • The CitySafe Campaign
  • Debate Mate

Mr Bang has been announced as the winner of the Nida Trust Creativity and Innovation Award 2012 in the field of Science & Technology.

The award was for a computing project that Mr Bang had produced, which involved Year 12 A-Level Computing/ICT pupils producing a piece of software using a higher level programming language. Each project was judged by a local IT company, Sidekick Studios, who also offer the winning candidate an opportunity to complete an internship with them.

The Nida Trust award ceremony was held at the Grand Suite of the Britannia Hotel in the Docklands. 500 guests and fellow teaching professionals were in attendance. Mr Bang and Central Foundation Boys’ School were announced as victorious taking home £1000 in prize money.

Congratulations to Mr Bang and the award winning ICT department.