Gladstone too wants more of oliver twist

OLIVER asked for “more” in the Charles Dickens classic and Gladstone just can't get enough.

Because the scheduled sessions for the latest combined schools musical 'Oliver' have sold out, an extra matinee is being performed today at 11am.

Director Jeannine Butler said this year's combined schools musical was the “best one ever”.

“The audience reactions have been wonderful, the students have really lifted the bar,” Ms Butler said.

Ms Butler said she was surprised with the audience feedback - some people said it was as good as the London show - but credited it to the cast.

“It's such a famous play... and it's multidisciplined, with singing, dancing and acting, so that might be why it's so popular,” she said.

“But I have never come across a group of kids that are so professional, so that would come across on stage as well.”

With 110 children from 21 schools taking part, Ms Butler said the camaraderie and friendships made across schools were another highlight - an opinion shared by the students as well.

“It's been amazing. It's something I could never believe I could have achieved. You feel so proud of yourself,” Chanel College student, Jessica Stayte said.

Meanwhile, Toolooa State High School student, Emily Newman said: “It's been fun, but by the end, we'll all be exhausted.”

However, Ms Butler said she will be extremely disappointed when the curtain closes for the last time today, with students and staff rehearsing since October last year.

Ms Butler said the staff who organised the play are all volunteers, but wanted to help out because they enjoyed it so much.

Tickets for today's matinee can be bought from the Gladstone Entertainment Centre box office from 8.30am this morning or by phoning 4972 2822.

The final performance will take place at 7.30pm, but it is already sold out.

You feel so proud of yourself.

Jessica Stayte