Warrington Collegiate students team up with Manchester Camerata

Performing Arts students at Warrington Collegiate have been given a real taste of the industry they hope to work with as part of an exciting collaboration between the College, Manchester Camerata and Cheshire Fire & Rescue Service.

Dance and drama students spent a full week working closely with industry professionals from Manchester’s chamber orchestra and firefighters to produce and perform a new piece called ‘Fatal Distraction’ tackling the issues surrounding young people and road traffic collisions.

Warrington Collegiate is one of four Cheshire colleges involved with the project, which will be performed at Crewe Lyceum at the end of February.

Each college group has worked with a Camerata composer, dramatist and musicians from the orchestra to write the new opera, which explores the causes and consequences of crashes involving young people.

It is informed by real life stories and explains the impact on drivers, passengers passers-by, families and the emergency service personnel that attend such incidents.

Warrington Collegiate students will perform two scenes during the final performance in Crewe but will also put their mark on the entire opera – with Scot Marshall and Katherine Howell landing the lead roles.

Michael Smith, Head of Faculty for Creative and Digital Industries, said: “It is absolutely fantastic that two of our students have been given the lead roles,  showing the high calibre of our learners and the standards they work to.”

As well as Performing Arts students, the project will also see a number of Level 3 Art students help to design and build the backdrops and props.

Michael added: “Working with Manchester Camarata is fantastic work experience for our students as it has given them the opportunity to work with industry professionals. They are working with people who have been in the industry for years and this has given them an idea of the kind of jobs they can expect to go into in the future.

“Our students have spent an entire week on the project. They have contributed to the lyrics and the scenes. It’s been a really worthwhile project and we’ve enjoyed every minute of it. We really appreciate the opportunity Manchester Camarata and Cheshire Fire & Rescue Service have given our students.”

One student described the project as “one of the best things” she has done this year.

Fatal Distraction will be performed to a public audience at Crewe Lyceum on 25th February.

Other Cheshire colleges and Year 11 students will also be invited to watch the dress rehearsal on the day.