Going Out in Style: Kids in Paradise (2016)

Commercial Road Primary School in Morwell closes its doors later this month after 137 years. During a week in which students and staff celebrated the school’s long history, festivities were capped off this past Thursday with a night of musical theatre. Free for the general public to enjoy, pupils from Prep to Grade 6 performed Kids in Paradise from Bushfire Press for the first time in 24 years. Written by Bartlett-Leehy-O’Mara, the island musical revolves around a would-be witch-doctor, Bomba, who must save the magic Bongo tree from corporate developers.

As a past student from Commercial Road who watched the show all those years ago, I found the experience to be very nostalgic, allowing me to feel it was like to be a child again, if only for a moment. The cast of youngsters gave it their all, extravagantly dressed in fluorescent clothing matching the production’s multi-coloured pallet. Despite an oddly random style, an important message of natural conservation is conveyed throughout. Full advantage was taken of the Performing Arts Centre, located at the newly built Morwell Central Primary School, with the modern venue giving kids a taste of both the technical aspects and theatrics of live performing.

Kids in Paradise was a spectacle last hoorah for Commercial Road Primary and while it’s many class rooms will soon fall silent, occasions such as these will live on in the memories of those you once attended.

(2016 dir: Lindle Lay, Michael Mendez, Mandie Black)

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