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Byron Shire
March 3, 2021

Makeup students enter the spotlight

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Colin Elliot as Aunty Nellie and Dave Thomas as Toad

The Wind in the Willows stage production currently being performed by the Murwillumbah Theatre Company presents a beneficial volunteer opportunity for the students studying Diploma in Specialist Makeup at Kingscliff TAFE.

The collaboration between the Murwillumbah Theatre Company and specialist makeup students is a ‘win-win’ situation. For the students, it provides a platform for them to gain experience in theatre makeup and the Theatre Company will benefit from the talents of the students’ work.

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Specialist makeup student Monquie Haye

‘I can’t speak highly enough of the students’ involvement in this production,’ says director Bryanne Jardine. ‘They are professional and very organised. I provided them with an overview of the characters with an idea of the effect I was expecting to achieve of the balance between the makeup and the costumes. The students offered some great suggestions and opened my eyes to how this could be achieved. I look forward to working with them on future productions.’

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Hayden Smith as Badger, Dave Thomas as Toad and Jean Watson as Ratty.

Elisa Stefanovic, teacher of specialist makeup, has high praise for her students’ talents and was confident they would shine in this situation.

‘The Diploma of Specialist Makeup students are currently in their twelfth week of a 24-week course,’ she said. ‘They are demonstrating real flair and enthusiasm for this industry. They were extremely excited to be involved in this project.’

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Makeup team work on the cast

To establish effective communication with the director and the cast the students appointed a team leader, Jess Hadfield, whose professional approach and calm demeanour ensured their successful involvement within the Wind in the Willows theatre production.

‘Initially we were all very nervous,’ she said. ‘We could see the amazing opportunity this volunteer work presented so we worked as a team and overcame our fears.

‘It has given us a great insight into career options and directions we can pursue within the industry.’

A Melbourne Cup Day event at the Byron Bay Golf Club will present the next exciting opportunity for the students. They have been asked to volunteer their time to make up the models for an Africa-inspired fashion parade. The event is being organised by the African LEAF charity, to raise money for orphaned or abandoned children in Africa.


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