Talent shines in Inaugural SCS Eisteddfod

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Dance contestants in the inaugural Sydney Catholic Schools Eisteddfod. Photo: Katherine Beale
Dance contestants in the inaugural Sydney Catholic Schools Eisteddfod. Photo: Katherine Beale

Sydney Catholic Schools (SCS) has showcased the amazing talents of its performing arts students at SCS’ inaugural Eisteddfod with the winners announced on 21 June.

The Eisteddfod was held over four Fridays at SCS’ first dedicated performing arts college, Southern Cross Catholic College Burwood, where students competed in more than 400 solo and ensemble instrumental, drama, dance and choir performances.

The performances were judged by an array of internationally renowned luminaries including award-winning vocal artist, dancer and actress, Rachel Beck. Beck has a long spanning career performing in stage and television productions, including Beauty and the Beast, Les Miserables, Home and Away and Hey Dad.

Sydney Catholic Schools’ specialist in the creative arts, Eva Spata, said the events were an opportunity to recognise and celebrate students’ performance skills in a supportive environment.

“Our Arts Team has been overwhelmed by the positive feedback from schools over the past few weeks,” Ms Spata exclaimed.

“We have seen such amazing talent up on stage day after day, and we are excited that the arts are well and truly alive and thriving in our schools!” – Eva Spata

“What an honour it has been to be entertained by our amazing students,” said Ms Spata.

“We can’t wait for next year’s event – it will be even bigger and better!”

Drama contestants in the inaugural Sydney Catholic Schools Eisteddfod. Photo: Gene Ramirez
Drama contestants in the inaugural Sydney Catholic Schools Eisteddfod. Photo: Gene Ramirez

A STAR TO WATCH

Isaiah Cheng, a Year 4 student from St Raphael’s Catholic Primary School Hurstville, is among our young stars on the rise.

Isaiah walked away with first and third place, respectively, in the Junior Classical Instrumental Solo Experienced and Junior Piano Solo Experienced sections.

“When I heard I won the first prize, I was very excited and proud of myself, especially because there were many other talented competitors in the competition” – Isaiah Cheng

“I just love to be on stage and share my music,” Isaiah said.

A passionate and talented musician, Isaiah has been playing the piano and cello since he was five years old and practices every day.

He is currently working towards completing an Associate in Music Australia (AMusA), a diploma awarded by examination to outstanding candidates in the fields of musical performance and music theory.

Music mavens: Marist Catholic College North Shore students Michael DeWit, Aleena Wiratunga, Jayden Wood, Poppy Douglass and Jasmine Franks performed in the junior ensemble category of Sydney Catholic Schools’ first eisteddfod. Photo: Natalie Roberts
Music mavens: Marist Catholic College North Shore students Michael DeWit, Aleena Wiratunga, Jayden Wood, Poppy Douglass and Jasmine Franks performed in the junior ensemble category of Sydney Catholic Schools’ first eisteddfod. Photo: Natalie Roberts

THE ROAD TO SUCCESS

“After learning piano for a year, I wanted to learn another instrument where I can carry it with me anywhere and play with other musicians,” Isaiah said.

“I was attracted to the deep, mellow and beautiful sound of the cello.

“I really enjoy playing piano and cello, as they are challenging and a lot of fun.

STAND-OUT PERFORMANCES

A number of schools across Sydney had stand-out performances in particular categories of the Eisteddfod.

In the Senior Vocal Solo (Experienced) category, Marist College Eastwood’s Dihann Tumaliuan and Xavier Watkins won 1st and 2nd place, while La Salle Catholic College Bankstown dominated the Senior Dance Solo Beginner with Sophia Fiorillo and Kiara Hearne winning 1st and 2nd place in this category.

La Salle Catholic College Bankstown also performed exceptionally well in the Senior Drama Solo Beginner section, with Chade Gitani and Jessica Duffy winning 2nd and 3rd places in this category.

A full list of winners can be found here.

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