Tipperary School Triumphs At The Bord Gáis Energy Student Theatre Awards

Presentation Secondary School, Thurles from Tipperary has been announced as a winner in two categories at the 2017 Bord Gáis Energy Student Theatre Awards.  The winners were revealed at a special awards ceremony at the Bord Gáis Energy Theatre on Wednesday, May 17 hosted by RTÉ 2FM presenter Eoghan McDermott.

The top prize in the Best Overall School Musical category was bestowed upon Presentation Secondary School, Thurles for their remarkable production of ‘Billy Elliot’.  The judges were dazzled by the production and noted that it was an absolutely stunning, ambitious, polished and beautifully performed piece.

Tipperary School Triumphs At The Bord Gáis Energy Student Theatre Awards

Best Overall School Musical winner, Thurles Presentation Secondary School at the Bord Gais Energy Student Theatre Awards

Zoe Gleeson, also from Presentation Secondary School Thurles, was awarded the top prize in the Best Performance in a Supporting Role category for her fantastic performance as ‘Mrs. Wilkinson’ in the school’s production of ‘Billy Elliot’.  The judges were so impressed by Zoe for the way she mastered a difficult accent and played a character way beyond her years with such nuance. Presentation Secondary School, Thurles received a bursary from Bord Gáis Energy.

Over 1,700 primary and secondary school students representing 63 schools from across Ireland attended the event and waited in suspense as the 2017 winners were revealed!  On the day, a number of shortlisted schools also had the opportunity to perform live on Ireland’s largest theatre stage and students were also treated to a surprise performance by Irish rock band, The Strypes!

Now in its fourth year, the Student Theatre Awards were set up by Bord Gáis Energy to recognise and reward participation in the dramatic arts in schools around Ireland.  This year, 2,616 entries were received from a record 309 primary and secondary schools.

Special guests at the awards ceremony included members of the Bord Gáis Energy Student Theatre Awards judging panel, including; actor and author Amy Huberman, Dancing with the Stars runner-up Aoibhín Garrihy, best-selling novelist Sinéad Moriarty, writer and storyteller Dave Rudden; Bord Gáis Energy Theatre Manager Stephen Faloon and Bord Gáis Energy Sponsorship Programme Manager, Tanya Townsend.

Open to primary school pupils from 3rd – 6th class and all secondary school students, the Bord Gáis Energy Student Theatre Awards featured 12 categories including performance and production categories such as; Best Overall School Musical, Best Costumes, and Best Performance in a Leading Role, to written categories such as; Best Dramatic Review and Best Short Scene Script.  A new category, Best Original Production, was also added to the 2017 awards in appreciation of the exceptional quality of original productions entered in 2016.

Commenting on the Awards, Mr. Dave Kirwan, Managing Director of Bord Gáis Energy said: “We set up these Awards four years ago to recognise and reward the incredible effort that goes into schools’ drama all around Ireland at both primary and secondary level.  The theme of this year’s awards was all about participation, and I think today’s ceremony was a great example of this.  It was fantastic to see so many schools from all over the country coming together to take part.”

“I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate all of this year’s winners and everyone who entered this year’s awards.  The talent, creativity and enthusiasm shown by students, teachers and parents has been exceptional!”

Bord Gáis Energy will be announcing dates for the 2018 Bord Gáis Energy Student Theatre Awards in the coming months. Tipperary schools who wish to enter next year’s awards can register their interest on www.bgesta.ie. Don’t miss out!

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