Ariel’s musicality was a hit – next stop: London’s West End

Students perform a song from Avenue Q. Stephen Candy Photography
Students perform a song from Avenue Q. Stephen Candy Photography

At the end of August Ariel students from all five Sussex academies joined together in a summer workshop to produce a show in just one week.

After five days of solid rehearsals Ariel’s Musicality cast performed on Saturday, August 27, to a packed audience at Crawley’s Hawth.

For its tenth anniversary, Musicality 2016 was bigger than ever before, featuring more than 50 performers and more than 30 musical numbers with complex harmonies and choreography. There were opportunities for solo lines and songs, as well as dance and physical theatre.

The event covered many different musical genres from shows that spanned the years. The variety in songs, from the heart-wrenching ‘Left Behind’ (Spring Awakening) to the comical ‘Betrayed’ (The Producers), left the audience both gripped and laughing. Songs from Barnum, West Side Story, Annie Get Your Gun and Bonnie and Clyde proved to be favourites and were performed with real energy. Tunes from more recent musicals, such as Legally Blonde, Kinky Boots and Beautiful, helped showcase students’ versatility.

Musicality director Nicci Hopson said: “It takes a lot of commitment from the students to produce a show of this standard in just a week. I am pleased to announce that the cast will be reuniting in December when the Musicality Choir hits the West End. Ariel’s older students will be performing at Her Majesty’s Theatre on December 11.”

Ariel offers free trials at all their drama academies for prospective students aged 5 -19. Places are available at the Haywards Heath, Crawley and East Grinstead academies and short waiting lists are in place at Burgess Hill and Steyning.

Call 01444 250407 or visit

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