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2022 Arts – Exploring, creating, refining and designing!

This year started with navigating the current landscape of covid protection framework in relation to each one of our Arts areas. Yet again, we are finding spaces to learn, grow and connect in a time of flux.

I would like to take a moment to acknowledge the Arts Communities in Tamaki Makaurau and all of Aotearoa who have also had to make big shifts, challenging decisions and forge new ways forward.

News below reflects the resilience, determination and dedication of our kaiako and akōnga here at WSCW. Scholorships, site specific dance films, shakespeare performance opportunities, music festivals and more!

WSCW Student Arts Committee – Want to be part of the Arts team at WSCW in 2022

Come and join our Arts Committee. We meet every Tuesday in TAPAC – studio 2.

Thanks to Lucie Harrison for this month’s image – Year 9 Dance, creative human movement photography

Samantha Wood Rawnsley – Arts Coordinator

Welcome Arts Leaders of 2022!

Mattheus  is interested in photography and media.  Follow his photography Instagram @the_canadian_kiwi. Katie has interest in Drama, PAT, Dance, she likes it all. Izzie has been a longstanding Media and  Dance student here at WSCW.

Come talk to us if you have any questions or thoughts about arts this year. If you want to find Mattheus he’ll either be playing frisbee on the field or in the Photography computer lab. (He has a man-bun or a beard. He’s a tall dude)

Katie can be found in Tapac or the KHCL building. (I’ll probably have a yellow backpack on.) Izzie hangs at Tapac and outside behind the cafeteria. (I’ll always have my green jumper!)

Come talk to us about anything arts or join our lovely arts committee to get your ideas heard!

If you can’t spot us don’t be scared to reach out through email. We’re really nice and fun and like talking to everyone.

We hope that all arts areas will be involved this year and enjoy collaborating together.

FOLLOW WESTERN SPRINGS ARTS @wscwarts  on Instagram

Drama has begun another challenging year. With students all mask wearing we have been focusing on the critical vocal techniques, asking all students to focus on volume, projecting their voices and working hard at their articulation.

Congratulations are due to Izzy Christie who gained Scholarship Drama and Angelo Boyd who successfully auditioned for The New Zealand Drama School, Toi Whakaari.

This yerar the year 13 students will work on their class production through Term One , to perform in week three of term 2. They will be supported by our year 12 and 13 Performing Arts Technology students, who will be responsible for all aspects of production and design, from stage management, to costumes, makeup, lighting etc.

The year 12 students are currently working on two combined standards, Drama Techniques and Theatre Form as are the year 11 students. These will be assessed at the end of term One.

Many of our senior students have also elected to enter the national Shakespeare festival by performing at the The Auckland West Regional Festival at Kristin School, Sunday 10 April. Unfortunately, because of being at Covid Red Level the actors will only be performing in front of the adjudicators, rather than a full audience. The hope is that come the National Festival in June we will be down to Orange or possibly green.

We will keep you posted on productions nearer to the performance dates.

Robert Pollock – HOD Drama

A rather quiet start for the Music Department this year. With our Covid protocol of everyone being outside during breaks our practice rooms are not yet ringing with sound. Not to worry – there is plenty of music being made in class time.

Instrumental Lessons

Thank you to our fabulous tutors Leza (singing) and Michelle (woodwind) who, as per Ministry of Ed. guidelines, are teaching outside at the moment! Dan has created a wee nook in one of our entranceways and the first week of lessons was successful, if humid. Well done to the students involved. Let us know asap if you would like to learn to play flute, clarinet, saxophone, cello or double bass. We have lessons (free) and instruments ready and waiting.

Performance Evenings

Covid restrictions willing, our senior students will have an evening this year when they will play their assessment pieces to an audience of whānau and friends. These evenings will all be in term  2, please diary these dates now.

Level 3 – week  5 Wednesday June 1st

Level 1 – week 9   Wednesday June 29th

Level 2 – week 10  Wednesday July 6th

Other dates to note

These are of course, all subject to confirmation.

Rockquest Heats:       22May

Rockquest finals:         June 11

RockQuest solo/duo:  June 11

Tangata Beats heats:   June 18

Tangata Beats final:    June 25

KBB Festival:               approx week 3 term3

School Talent Quest:   October 1st


Margaret, Dan and Thea

Congratulations Stefan Tomokino on achieving Scholarship Dance! Stefan’s achievement continues the WSCW Dance Department’s 100% success rate in achieving scholarship over the last ten years.
Stefan submitted his choreography and a portfolio explaining his creative work and understanding of performance. For L3 Dance and Scholarship he produced an imaginative dance inspired by the whakataukī “Kiawhakatōmuri te haere whakamua: My past is my present is my future. I walk backwards into the future with my eyes fixed on my past.” The music he created to accompany his choreography combined and edited sound effects and a song, and was outstanding.

Stefan Tomokino in 3 images. Arms curving, crossed arms, open arms, face forward eyes closed.
Photo credit –  Nina G Photography

In other news, despite Auckland Arts Festival cancelling the three shows we had booked to take students to this term, we still have some exciting plans! We welcome back guest tutor Otis Herring, who will teach African dance movement and history to the Year 11 and 12 Dance classes. The year 11 class this year will be working with their teacher Sam Wood Rawnsley in collaboration with Jahra Wasasala to create their 1.3 ensemble piece. Also in Term 2 we will be welcoming our Hip Hop Tutors. In Term 3 Year 13 Dance students will have the privilege of working with a guest professional choreographer who will make a dance on them. We will try to book more trips to the theatre later in the year.


In December a small group of Year 10 and 11 Dance students worked with filmmaker Carolyn Sylvester on her movie about Waititiko Meola Creek.  Hayley Cheung, Angel Mendoza and Tia Ormsby were creative and versatile, developing their own choreography to reflect this new performance space! Look out for Carolyn’s film featuring local artists, dancers, scientists and horticulturalists responding to our creek.

Students who are interested in developing their contemporary and ballet skills further may be interested in Pointy Dog Dance Company. This group is for students aged 13-17 years and meets 5-7pm Fridays in Tapac. See Tapac reception, or one of the WSCW dance teachers for more information.

Chloe and Sam – Dance Department

Scholarship Success!

Extended Greetings from Rangitoto

It’s been a whirlwind of activity as we settle into the first term – introducing students to the new programs and challenges for the year. We are also mindful of the limitations of living through a pandemic, and in readiness for any distraction have assembled resources similar to past lockdowns.

In regards to student success – congratulations goes 2021 NZQA Scholarship recipients in Level 3 Art Design – Zoe Ferstat and Sofia Kotelevskaya and in Level 3 Art Photography – Zoe Tibbutt – marvelous achievement.

We are also pleased to congratulate Zoe Ferstat – last year’s winner of the TuiSamoa Art Cup for 2021, who has had her Level 3 Art Design portfolio selected by NZQA as a part of the NZQA 2021 Top Art Exhibition.  This is a great honour for both Zoe and the school as only the top five percent are chosen for the touring exhibition.

Another student who also needs to be acknowledged is Mattheus Elwood. Last year he submitted a work for a competition and was accredited as one of the winners of the New Zealand Geographic Young Photographer of the Year.

Great to see their creative talents beyond the school gates and look forward to sharing more student success throughout the year.


Zoe Ferstat – 2021 NZQA Scholarship & Top Art Design / Illustration
Mattheus Elwood – Homework at a Birthday Party  (award-winning photograph 2021)

Finally, a fee reminder to parents and guardians about the payment of Art fees for Y10-13.  Our ability to provide relevant EOTC opportunities, the appropriate technical and specialised resources for the year is dependent on your continued support.  Thanks in advance.

Ia Manuia          HOD Art – Lily Laita              


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