STARS is very interested in providing school children with opportunities to enjoy various types of music. Some time ago, during a discussion with the head of Willunga Primary School, Ali Colbeck, it was decided to organise a concert for all students featuring opera, a musical medium that most had not discovered.

Greg John, former arts co-ordinator at Tatachilla Lutheran College (and very much a part of State Opera and other events in the region, such as Big Sing, The Messiah and three local choirs) was most enthusiastic when STARS approached him to liaise with the school and produce an introduction to Opera or an Opera Experience.

Greg chose Carmen, which is a great opera with plenty of music. drama and dance. He enlisted the help of local opera singers Samantha Rubenhold and Robert England and other friends. He borrowed some wonderful costumes and together they presented something unique to the students at Willunga Show Hall.

The children responded well and indeed participated in the show, with clapping, singing, dancing and playing some specially styled musical instruments. The dance troupe was taught a great Carmen piece and implemented it with style.

For pupils and some teachers, it was the first time they had witnessed opera and Willunga Show Hall was an excellent venue to present a live performance - no mobile phones or iPods here.

Carolyn Colling

Chairperson STARS