Cleveland State School named a finalist in Wakakirri Story-Dance Challenge

STORYTELLERS: Cleveland State School students boogied their way to a win at the Wakakirri Brisbane heats. Photo: Winkipop Media
STORYTELLERS: Cleveland State School students boogied their way to a win at the Wakakirri Brisbane heats. Photo: Winkipop Media

A TEAM of Cleveland State School performers has taken out the prize for Best Celebration Story in the Brisbane heat of the Wakakirri Story-Dance Challenge.

Wakakirri, Australia's biggest performing arts event for primary and secondary schools, saw 22 teams from schools across the south-east taking the stage at Logan Entertainment Centre.

They were among more than 280 schools who competed in regional heats nation-wide.

During the school's second year taking part in the competition, students performed a piece called Sensational Legends of Dance Throughout History, telling the story of an aspiring young dancer who discovers a magical book that transports her back in time.

Cleveland State School teacher and Wakakirri co-ordinator Shauna Grice said the school's performance allowed young students to experience a variety music and dance from different eras.

"We have encouraged our year 6 lead students to help with choreography to enable them them to have ownership over the different scenes," she said.

"Due to the students being unfamiliar with most of the eras, (they) have spent a lot of time researching and watching YouTube clips to help become familiar with the varying styles.

"Our students have thoroughly enjoyed becoming familiar with all the moves associated with each era, especially our featured boys who have loved identifying with the very famous dance moves of Elvis.

"We also wanted our story to connect with our school community, the celebration of books and the power of storytelling, therefore we established a school fundraiser where we collected 100 books for the Children's Hospital School. The 100 books represents the 100 years of dance the students have studied throughout this adventure."

Cleveland State School students now have the chance to return to the stage at the Brisbane Awards Night Shows, vying for a nomination for for Wakakirri's top national award, Story of the Year.

CHEER: Bay View State School students had a ball during their performance. Photo: Winkipop Media

CHEER: Bay View State School students had a ball during their performance. Photo: Winkipop Media

Also among the competitors were students from Bayview State School who performed a dance about connecting with the self, nature, friends and family.

They were recognised for their outstanding hair, makeup and costumes, with judge James Lee commending the students on their enthusiasm.

Established in 1992, Wakakirri is an opportunity for students to share stories that express their thoughts, ideas and aspirations through the performing arts.

This year Wakakirri's National Panel of industry experts includes yellow Wiggle Emma Watkins, entertainer Todd McKenney and Play School stars Justine Clarke, Alex Papps and Andrew McFarlane.

Wakakirri's Story of the Year Award will be announced October 17 and will be broadcast online.