The Daramalan Theatre Company
The Daramalan Theatre Company was formed in 1998 to give a professional structure to the theatrical performances presented by Daramalan College students and staff. It acknowledges Daramalan’s very fine prior record in the Performing Arts while developing a formal rationale for the development and presentation of theatre.
The Company explores theatrical processes and subject matter of particular relevance for younger people, the Daramalan community and the wider society. Its program varies from group devised productions, classic and contemporary scripts, in-house scripted works and musicals. Each is given a fresh treatment that will be of benefit to the participants and audiences.
The underlining rationale is that our arts can be harnessed to focus on the very foundations of what it is to be human beings facing realities that both challenge and reinforce our spiritual potential.
Being a Catholic school espousing Christian values and the particular MSC ethos, we believe it is imperative that we link arts practice with investigations into spirituality. This removes the “preachy” aspects of more didactic presentation to highlight the need and search for spiritual dimensions in our lives through artistic exploration. The particular content of much of our work draws on a dichotomy between materialist, humanist and spiritual values. There are not many institutions in a position, nor with the resources and expertise, to explore this area in any real depth or even with such daring.
The chosen themes are often spiritual in nature while acknowledging the contemporary reality of contemporary experience: ennui, rampant materialism, the abandonment of spiritual values, the reduction of life and existence to commodities, the havoc caused by drugs and addictions, the growing violence between competing belief systems. Focusing on these issues gives greater leverage and support to curricula and pastoral care programs offered within the school. It also gives the wider community a focus for artistic relevance for everyday existence.
These themes are found in Shakespeare as they are in many great works of literature and art. The themes are a constant source of concern and creation for both students and teachers within Daramalan. The school has a very strong, embedded sense of purpose in the area of social justice. This gives rise to developing works that reflect this sense: eg. "Alice Is Missing (2001), Cathedral Song (2002), Mack The Knife And Children Of The Bauhaus (2007, Alibrandi (2008), Lockie Leonard (2009), Little Shop of Horrors (2009), iSHORTS 1 and 2 and The Tempest in 2012.
The linking of theatrical and multi-media skills and resources with Chaplaincy and the RE Department have given rise to the development and presentation of two very significant Easter presentations: "Resurrection" written by Sr. Mary Hamilton (2007) and "The Hope Of Easter" (2008). The company has embraced exploration of theological and philosophical discourse and precepts to relate these to the world of contemporary experience.