Woodford house


Performing Arts in Action

It has been a busy and productive time in Performing Arts this term with girls giving huge commitment and passion to shape their skills ready for polished performances. From mooting at the Hastings District Court to competing in Stage Challenge and the Regional Big Sing Competition at Napier Cathedral, girls have been able to connect with an activity that builds learning and brings enjoyment in the sharing.

Mooting Competition

Three potential young lawyers had the experience of speaking in a courtroom as part of the University of Waikato Mooting competition. Cilla Hewitt (First Counsel), Sarah Wixon (Second Counsel) and Samantha Walsh (Research Counsel) had to prepare a case to present to a judge.


Cilla Hewitt, as First Counsel presents the case for the Appellant in the Mooting Competition at the Hastings District Court.


Second Counsel, Sarah Wixon, continues the case for the Woodford House Mooting team with the support of First Counsel, Cilla Hewitt and Research Counsel, Samantha Walsh.

The girls were the Appellants in a case concerning the presence of alcohol at an after ball function which was a real case that has gone before the court in the past. They had to read and understand the Acts and case law relevant to this situation.

An understanding of court etiquette was also required and the girls were very fortunate to receive some tutoring by Judge Tony Lendrum.

The team presented their moot before a judge at the Hastings District Court in May with a team from Iona College as the Respondents. Although neither team moved through to the semi -finals it was an invaluable exercise in real life learning.

Josephine Carpenter, Director of Performing Arts

Stage Challenge

Multiple schools from across Hawke’s Bay and Gisborne came to compete in this fantastic day of dance on Friday 9 June at the Municipal Theatre in Napier. The day was incredibly long for the Stage Challenge leaders finishing at 11.30pm after the evening performance, but luckily we got a dinner break in between.

The day was full of activities such as watching the other schools performances, getting ready and our favourite activity was having dance parties outside our dressing room to get pumped to perform!

When I was dancing up on stage in front of an audience my nerves went away and I just had fun, I’m sure this was the same for many of the other girls. Backstage meetings, make-up and costume preparation, dance parties and, of course, dancing onstage were highlights of the event and something we will always remember.


Cast, Crew and support teachers dressed and ready to perform at the Regional Stage Challenge event.


The ‘Citizens’ show some attitude during their performance.

It was a fantastic experience being the Head of Stage Challenge, but I couldn’t have done it without Grace May, Ava Bake, Rosa Turley and Charlotte Frogley, who were part of the Stage Challenge team. Grace and I spent many weekends on Stage Challenge and Rosa was busy making the props, with great help from Mr Foggin, and sorting out costume and makeup. Ava organised all logistics and preparation for the event, and Charlotte helped sort out the lighting for our performance.

Stage Challenge ran very smoothly thanks to Mrs Fiona Mackenzie and Mrs Josephine Carpenter who organised the event as well as Stage Challenge t -shirts for the crew, transport and generally everything to make it all happen.

We’re all very grateful for the amazing learning opportunity and I particularly enjoyed experiencing what it’s like to run a proper dance production. The loving, enthusiastic support and energy given by the girls was amazing and it was awesome to see everyone enjoying themselves.

Stephanie Goodwin, Student Head of Dance

Big Sing

This premium event for our two senior choirs, UpClose and the Chapel Choir was held at Napier Cathedral on Thursday 1 June.

Both choirs had prepared challenging material for the three sections of a New Zealand, a classical and ‘other’ piece – which is a selection from any genre.

The girls performed superbly and received positive feedback from the audience.


The Chapel Choir presenting their New Zealand piece, E te Ariki at the Regional Big Sing Competition at Napier Cathedral.


UpClose, our a capella group ready to perform with their Director, Jose Aparicio.


UpClose received the trophy for the best presentation of their song in the ‘Other Section’ with their song ‘A Maid that’s Deep in Love’.

We were thrilled when UpClose, our a capella group received the trophy in the ‘other’ section for their presentation of A Maid that’s Deep in Love. Congratulations girls.

Josephine Carpenter, Director of Performing Arts

NZCT Chamber Music Contest

The Hawke’s Bay district of the annual NZCT Chamber Music Contest, was held on Wednesday 14 June at the Napier Municipal Theatre. This year there were 45 entries from high schools around Hawke’s Bay, including five groups from Woodford House.


For the first time this year Woodford House entered a junior group comprised of Year 9 students, Mackenzie Grant (flute), Amelia Dear (cello) and Rachel Hansen (piano), known as ‘Ramac Trio’.

We also had a group of international students enter this year, called ‘Teki Trio’, which included Peak Techathong, Point Techathong and Seungmin Kim all on the flute.

‘Quattro Allegria’, including Susannah Hansen, Amelia Foster, BamBam Pheugphoolphol and Emily Park, was noted by the adjudicators as the first piano quartet they had ever seen in this competition.

Year 13 trio ‘Cascade’ of Annah Knowles (flute), Caitlin Maiorana (flute) and Susannah Hansen (piano) mastered the extremely difficult piece Trio Allegro con brio by Madeleine Dring.

Bella Christie, along with her group ‘Orpheus Trio’ including Tajpreet Padda (flute) and Yukari Suzuki (piano), was one of the only four singers to compete in the competition.

Year 12 violinist Amelia Foster was selected with her group ‘Haydn Trio’ of Isabelle Potbury (violin) from Napier Girls’ High School and Finn Durrent (cello) from Taradale High School as one of only eight groups to perform in the Hawke’s Bay District Final on the Thursday evening.

Thank you to our teachers Sarah Delany and Anna Hansen for the time and preparation that has gone into these groups, as well as Ms Tess Tobin and Mrs Fiona Mackenzie for organising and supporting the groups leading up to the competition.

Emily Park, Student Head of Chamber Music