South Tyneside college students shine in musical show

South Tyneside College Interface students.
South Tyneside College Interface students.
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A group of South Tyneside College students have overcame learning barriers to put on a performance of a lifetime.

The students - who are taught within the college’s specialist Interface department for people aged 16 to 25 on the autism spectrum - took to the stage twice in a day to thrill parents and friends with a musical performance.

The group performed a number of song and dance routines to Don’t Stop Me Now from We Will Rock You, Seasons of Love from Rent, Consider Yourself from Oliver.

Lecturer Shelley Deakin said: “These shows were the culmination of five months of rehearsals and research which saw the students use social media channel YouTube to see how the songs had been performed, and some even went to the theatre.

“Some of our students struggle with one-to-ones and social interaction, and so to get up on stage – some for the first time – was a great achievement.”

The 40 minute performances took place in the college’s Studio 5 professional performance suite within its Westoe campus in St George’s Avenue, South Shields.

The shows were created as part of the overall course provision that supports students to develop better social interaction skills and gain confidence.

Ms Deakin added:“They have displayed some real talent and the shows were very good, but the real outcome has been around personal progress, which is what the work of Interface is all about.

“The performance skills they have learned will expand into other areas of their lives, such as helping in interviews and social interaction.”