Welcome to the Stoverview

Welcome to the Stoverview which, it is hoped, will be of interest to those connected with Stover School - and also to the wider community involved with secondary education, and perhaps to those just interested in 'bits and pieces' about science, history and stuff! See here for more.

Friday, 16 December 2011

Dramatic Reflections

Did you hear about the accident-prone actor? It was just a stage he was going through...

Yes, it has been pretty hectic here in the Drama Department over the last two months - writes Ms Absalom. Bugsy Malone was great fun of course, but there were also two 'theatre' trips and the Off-By-Heart Shakespeare Competition.
First was the trip to Kents Cavern for an underground hour-long adapted version of Romeo and Juliet. Butterfly Productions created a wonderfully atmospheric performance among the stalagtites, ‘mites and mineral deposits, ushering us through the twists and turns of the caves to the tragic deaths of the star-crossed lovers in The Great Chamber. This was a promenade performance where we were literally swept along, on foot, with the action.

What an incredible setting for any Shakespeare play – we shall certainly be going to Butterfly’s Macbeth in the Cavern next year.

More recently, An Inspector Calls riveted us to our seats in the Plymouth Theatre Royal. J B Priestley’s old favourite was given a new spin – the Edwardian house in a street set exploded in front of our eyes. Fireworks on stage… followed by an animated discussion on the coach home about social injustice then and now. A Whodunnit with a psychological and social agenda.

Two of our students also took part in the regional finals of the national BBC Off-by-Heart Shakespeare competition in Bristol. Abigail Bulbulian (Yr 10) and Abigail Joint (Yr 9) learnt different speeches from A Midsummer Night’s Dream to perform in the competition, competing with 1500 others. They workshopped the character, text and language in school. Then worked with professional actors. Abi and Abi showed enormous courage, confidence, talent and enthusiasm. Congratulations, girls!

Thursday, 15 December 2011

Carol Service

Monday morning saw Exeter Cathedral packed with parents and friends for the Stover School carol service. It was a lovely occasion, in a wonderful setting, which fittingly marked the beginning of the Christmas season for all present. Staff and pupils were bussed in with military precision, and a varied programme incorporated contributions from the Senior Choir, Prep School Choir, Cantabile, soloists, orchestra, readers and of course the congregation!

Wednesday, 14 December 2011

Farewell Gappies!

Today we said goodbye to Rita and Madelaine, our two Australian 'Gap Year' students, who have been a continually upbeat and cheerful presence throughout the school for the past year. They have made a big contribution to Stover and have been fully involved in a wide range of activities, such as: helping out in the Prep School and Nursery, boarding duties, secretarial work and exam supervision.
We shall miss them of course, but wish them well as they return 'Down Under' to pursue their university studies, and hopefully they will keep in touch with Stover and the many friends they made whilst here.

Friday, 9 December 2011

A Little Spanish Something

A really valuable contribution to Stover's vibrant student body  was made  this term by our four 'short-stay' Spanish pupils. Never one to be backwards in coming forward, Mrs Machin (ICT) invited them  to join her in the Home Ec. Room for Pa amb oli ('bread and oil').  This is a traditional food usually eaten at special occasions in Spain.  It consists of Rye bread cut into slices; rubbed with a ripened tomato which has been cut in half.  A good quality olive oil is then poured onto the bread followed by some salt with herbs. 
It is optional to add Serrano ham, chorizo and cheese.  The most common cheese to use is Manchego (Goat’s cheese). 

A few members of staff 'happened to drop by' in order to join in and were shown by the pupils how to create their own Pa amb oli.  The meal was finished off with some lovely stuffed olives and red grapes.

David James Coaches Stover Footballers

Stover footballers were privileged earlier this term to welcome David James for a goalkeeping training session.

The Bristol City keeper is a former England international and holds the football league appearance record for goalkeepers. He has also kept more clean-sheets than any other league glovesman. League and FA Cup winner James’ former clubs include: Watford, Liverpool, Aston Villa, West Ham, Manchester City and Portsmouth.

Wednesday, 7 December 2011

Bugsy Malone

Tallulah amd the girls
Friday saw the final triumphant performances of this year's school musical Bugsy Malone. Set in 1929, the Jubilee Hall was transformed into Fat Sam's Grand Slam Speakeasy in prohibition New York, complete with gangsters, showgirls and of course Bugsy the boxing promoter plus girl friend Blousey Brown and sassy admirer Tallulah.

Amongst many very entertaining moments, particularly polished performances were put in by Clara Finigan who played the title role with poise, aplomb and great stage presence, Abigail Joint as Blousey and  Annabel Kennedy as Tallulah. There was also great support from the vast cast of hoodlums and hangers-on, a lovely song from Georgina Allen as Fizzy, and some neat choreography from the show girls. Wonderful costumes and impressive splurge guns topped off a highly enjoyable show.

Congratulations to all performers, the stage hands, Tony Etheridge for the car, and a special thanks to directors Ms Absalom and Mrs Middleton, music meister Mr Hurst and technical guru Mr Haigh.

Ms Absalom writes... ‘We could have been anything that we wanted to be….’ Our young cast of 11–15 year olds did themselves proud in our matinee and evening performances on Friday, 2 December. Many of the performers were new to the experience and all are to be congratulated. The Year 10 girls, with a few years of ‘treading the boards’ behind them, set a terrific example in early word learning and the importance of self-discipline as an actor. A new American pupil in Year 9, Alyssa Chudy, choreographed the musical numbers with superb panache and brought an authentic sense of glamour to the 1930s speakeasy. As well as those mentioned above, Saul Kurzman (Yr 8) met the challenges of failing gangland boss, Fat Sam with great maturity and good comic technique .

Mrs Middleton and I would both like to congratulate and thank the company for ‘getting it together’ and their brilliant American, Irish and camp accents!

Tuesday, 6 December 2011

South Devon Schools' Cross-Country Comes to Stover

Last week saw teams of runners from all over the region descend on Stover as we hosted the South Devon Schools' Cross-Country Championships. Congratulations to Mrs Craven and her team, ably helped by the Sixth Form CSL pupils, for organising such a highly successful event. Thanks also to our groundsmen ('The Barn Boys') for getting the place so well set up.