The show must go on

29 Jun 2020

For 50 years the House Plays Festival has been one of the most popular and competitive events on the College calendar and so, despite disruptions to the school year, the only obvious REACTION was to rethink, refine and streamline the production to ensure the show could go on.

With only three weeks to prepare, the boys rose to the challenge, sourcing short plays with small casts, suitable to be performed in the OBT – and whether thought-provoking, funny, entertaining or absurd, they all succeeded in leaving their audiences satisfied.

The 2020 REACTION House Plays Festival took place over three nights – with Somes, Jacobs and School on Monday 22 June; Condell’s, Harper, Julius and Richards on Tuesday 23 June; and Rolleston, Corfe and Flower’s on Thursday 25 June. Adjudicator Peter Rutherford, Director of Theatre Arts at Rangi Ruru Girls’ School, gave each group of young thespians comprehensive feedback, highlighting the quality and strength of their performance, their commitment and their success in creating some captivating work.

REACTION House Plays Awards 2020

Actor’s Award

For creation of a credible character, with impact

Alex Brett – Condell’s
Elia Garrett – Jacobs
Richard Harnett – Flower’s
Hamish McCulloch – Harper
Josh Ratulomai – Corfe
Hugo Sudell – Julius
Liam Sue-Tang – Condell’s
Angad Vraich – Somes
Ben Young – Corfe

Runner-up Best Actor

For superior creation of a credible character, with impact

Reis Azlan – Condell’s
Max Charteris – School

Best Actor

For outstanding creation of a credible character, with impact

George Lill – Rolleston

Adjudicator’s Special Creativity Award

Corfe – for original cyclical narrative
Julius – for original contemporary references
Somes – for original adaptation of a script

Ensemble Award

For onstage group commitment and sustained energy

Condell’s – The Quiz
Flower’s – Don’t Count Your Ostriches
Harper – The Waiting Game
Rolleston – Murder at Merryweather Mansion
School – Us & Them

Production Award

For effective use of drama technologies

Somes – live music
Jacob’s – costume
Julius – overall effective technologies

Special Technician Award

For outstanding contribution and service to all Houses

Ben Davis – School
Remy Fitzgerald – Corfe

Director’s Award

Script realisation

Charlie Owens and Ethan Manera – Somes
Jamie Yee – Condell’s
Harrison Lund – Rolleston
Kit Lamb and Ben Davis – School
Henry Briscoe – Flower’s

Best Director

For overall realisation of script as a cohesive and compelling play
Dominic Edmond – Us & Them – Corfe

Third Place, overall House play

Rolleston House – Murder at Merryweather Mansion
Director Harrison Lund

Second Place, overall House play

Corfe House – Us & Them
Director Dominic Edmond

Tothill Cup, Best House Play Overall

Somes House – The Waiting Game
Directors Charlie Owens and Ethan Manera

People’s Choice Award

Night 1: Somes – The Waiting Game
Night 2: Condell’s – The Quiz
Night 3: Rolleston – Murder at Merryweather Mansion

Adjudicator’s 2020 Magic Moments

Julius – Cupid’s excitement about “it”
Somes – the man in the box
Richards – Mrs Merryweather’s true colours
School – building a wall
School – the recorder gives up
Harper – crossword flurry
Jacobs – Ozone hole
Condell’s – Terry’s “oh God” revelation
Rolleston – Koko mounts the table
Corfe – Tik Tok moment
Flower’s – the death of capitalism, money shower


Peter Rutherford