Talented students have taken centre stage in a global event to celebrate local theatre.
Edge Hill University’s most gifted students have been given the rare opportunity to perform some of the biggest show songs in theatre as part of licensor Music Theatre International’s All Together Now! Event – the first public performance featuring Edge Hill students since before the Covid-19 pandemic.
The exclusive musical revue, which took place on Monday in The Arts Centre, featured songs from some of the industry’s best-loved shows including Disney’s Beauty and the Beast, Les Misérables and Hairspray entirely produced and performed by Edge Hill students.
Members of Edge Hill’s musical theatre society Upstage spoke of their joy at being able to perform for the public for the first time in more than 18 months.
Society president Megan Pierrepont said: “This has been a reminder of why I chose to go into musical theatre; it’s been such an amazing opportunity and we consider ourselves extremely lucky to have taken part in this MTI event. It was so emotional seeing this incredible bunch of people back on stage in front of a live audience.”
Vice-president Zoë Simpson said: “Something was missing out of all our lives for the last 18 months and finally being back together as a society, doing what we enjoy the most, has lifted our morale and reminded us why we do what we do.”
And treasurer Georgia Reaney added: “Not being able to perform in any way or see anyone was so hard for me and everyone else, making this showcase a very important night for us all.”
Georgia revealed that nerves were “higher than usual” because of the length of time since the society’s last performance but Nick Sanders, Programme Leader for Musical Theatre, said all the students, from a variety of courses including Sociology and History, had excelled themselves.
“We were incredibly excited to celebrate the return of live theatre with performances of MTI’s All Together Now!” he said.
“The past year has been a challenging time for everyone, particularly arts organisations so we were proud to be welcoming our patrons back with this truly wonderful revue.
“Our students should be incredibly proud of themselves for bringing their love of live theatre back to campus.”
Drew Cohen, MTI’s President and CEO, added: “MTI’s All Together Now! is about bringing people back to the theatre, whether as audience members or cast, crew and musicians.
“Our goal with this worldwide event is for organisations to provide hope, inspiration and excitement to their communities through the transformative power of musical theatre.”
Edge Hill University’s Arts Centre features a varied programme of events throughout the year with upcoming highlights including BAFTA award-winning broadcaster and filmmaker David Olusoga, comedian Russell Kane and a production of A Christmas Carol by Olivier Award-winner Guy Masterson.