‘Blood Brothers’ at Theatr Clwyd review

Blood Brothers 2022

On Thursday 5th of May 50 year 9 students attended an evening performance of Willy Russell’s ‘Blood Brothers’ at Theatr Clwyd in Mold, North Wales, taken by Ms McGuirk, Dr Parkes, Miss Harrison and Miss Parker. Mrs Till and Miss Robinson from Finance also came along to support the trip.

‘Blood Brothers’ is a musical set in Liverpool in the 1960’s through to the 1980’s and tells the story of the Johnstone twins, Mickey and Edward, who were separated at birth when their poverty stricken mother could not afford to keep both of them. Mrs Johnstone is a poor working class single mother with many other children already in trouble with “the Welfare” and the courts, so gives into pressure from her wealthy middle class employer, Mrs Lyons (who is infertile) to “give one to me”. Mrs Lyons forces Mrs Johnstone to swear on the bible to keep their deal a secret and to never to tell the boys the truth, that they were “once part of a pair” as Mrs Lyons warns Mrs Johnstone that if “either twin ever discover the truth, they shall both immediately die”. So, despite being reunited multiple time later in life and becoming best friends and then (ironically) ‘blood brothers’ the boys do not discover until it is too late, the secret of their separation.

On the night of the performance, most students travelled on a hired coach and a few specially selected individuals (including ourselves!) went on a mini bus driven by Doctor Parkes. When we arrived at the venue everyone was very excited and quite impressed by the beautiful surroundings in the Welsh hills, and as it was a warm sunny evening, most people had a run about on the wide open grass space even rolling down hills and climbing trees! When we were taken inside, we were told to turn our phones off for about 15 minutes and Dr Parkes took half my Starbursts – I was not amused by that, unlike Edward in the performance who happily gives Mickey all his sweets!

It was a very funny and at times quite rude performance which had the audience laughing out loud frequently. The actors playing Mickey and Eddie were incredibly talented and convincing at portraying their characters as children, teenagers and then adults through the clever changes they made to their body language, voices and facial expressions which they changed and developed throughout to convey their personalities and aging process. One of the funniest bits was when the characters Mickey and Eddie were trying to fool Mickey’s mum about the rude films they were going to watch at the cinema (Swedish au Pairs and Nymphomaniac Nights) trying (but failing!) to convince her that the films were a ‘travelogue’ and a documentary! The comedy was contrasted with sad scenes, and of course the extreme tragedy at the very end, which was so well played out on stage that almost everyone in the audience jumped out of their seats with shock at the arrival in the aisles of the armed police and then the gun shots!

Over all we believe that the trip was very good and would recommend it to anyone studying the play in school like we were, or who just love musical theatre and a strong storyline that really makes you think about social injustice as well as containing very interesting characters.

Henry B. and Sam C.


End of Year Assessment Information





Year 11 Virtual Information Evening



Students writing to be published from ‘Twisted Tales’ competition

Congratulations to all our students who will have their creative writing published by Young Writers! A fantastic and thoroughly deserved achievement!

Students Isobel H, Sophie C, Sophie B, Sydney M, Sophie W, Olivia T-P, Darcy D, Evie M and Gemma S all had entries organised by Miss Harrison and the English department sent to the ‘Twisted Tales’ writing competition to great acclaim.

Selected students work :

I’ll be back. I still haven’t forgotten how it all felt. The flames licking against my skin, the sinful scorch marks left across me. Ropes restricting me, hugging my lungs like an old friend. They called it a suitable punishment, an eye for an eye, a villain for a hero. I remember the cheering as the executioner lifted the blazing torch. Revenge is complicated, they are just as human as I am and yet my death is justified in their eyes. If that was how I was going to go out, then so be it. I made sure to come back ten times harder.

Gemma S (Year 12)

Bittersweet

The putrid stench of withered souls hung in the air.  Candles lit the hallway with the dim blue glow of night.  A young woman stared at ancient bones that were perched on an iron throne, its head tilted, staring at her.  In black cloth with golden thread, it spoke in a shivering whisper.  Her response fell from sugary sweet lips.  Her golden eyes glimmered with tears that rolled from her soft skin.  But her words left a bitter taste.  For she was no girl, but a monstrous killer, feared by death itself.

Darcey D (Year 10)

Death

It’s hard you know. When I, an eternal entity, signed up for the role of Death, I thought it would be easy. Just turn up, reap some souls and be on your way. But no. They don’t remove your emotion, they just let you deal with it on your own. I’m not afraid to admit, so many times I have wished I could reap my own soul, take my own life. No-one mentions having to take a granddaughter’s life whilst their grandma watches. Having to listen to a child calling, concerned, for the dog it doesn’t yet know is dead.

Isobel H (Year 9)

Revenge is Sweet

This was the end. I had just blown up the last building in the city. Pieces of debris flew through the air, striking my side and tearing up my skin like a piece of paper. This will punish the racist police officers who murdered my family, who snatched everything from my life. Struck down, I laid like a ragdoll in the middle of the street, the blazing fire licking my face with its torrid tongue. My mouth parched from the heat, thick blood oozing from the swollen gash on my side. At last, I would be reunited with my family.

Olivia T-P (Year 7)

Just Three Drops

Ten years of my life and it has all led to this. All of my excruciating and immense pain will be avenged tonight. Ten years of planning and plotting all comes down to now, my five minute strike. The revenge I have always dreamed of. Just three drops and he will feel a fragment of the suffering, all of that anguish I have come to know. He will pay for killing her, my mother. Getting behind that wheel will be, in his mind, an ache of the past. Those last two drinks will become a cold and distant nightmare.

Sophie B (Year 8)

Don’t Underestimate the Jacksons

“You won’t win.”

His shield dripped with blood and his forehead beaded with sweat.

“Oh honey, I already have.”

With a flick of her hand, Arabella Jackson manipulated the winds, causing the Captain’s head to fully twist off his neck. Blood dripped from his decapitated neck. Eyes wild with insanity, the young girl threw the head into a small box. Once it was sealed, she messily wrote: ‘Mr Stark, Stark Tower. You’re next!’

Sophie W (Year 9)

Unhappy Ever After

I didn’t want to be the villain. I had to though if the princess’ life was at stake. I tied up my hair and my shoes and began to scale the moss-covered mansion. I saw her in the window but then… I saw him. We raced up the house whilst glancing at each other.

“Eyes on the prize,” I said.

But then, because of my luck, I fell. My body fell through the air. He’d won again. I had no choice, but to enact immediate … revenge.

Sydney M (Year 8)









Our students’ valiance in the Youth Speaks competition

This week, three Year 9 students took part in the Rotary Club’s ‘Youth Speaks’ public speaking competition. On the 1st of February, the students competed against students from other schools in the region. This proved to be even more challenging due to the fact that this particular event took place online.

Helsby’s team consisted of Year 9 students Reece H (Chairperson), Matthew H (Speaker) and Henry P (Vote of thanks). The team crafted their own speech that examined finances in football, exploring how money has been spent in the past compared with modern day. They presented a mature and engaging argument throughout and delivered this enthusiastically, with a real sense of passion for their topic. In addition to the delivery of their own speech, the respect they showed and the attention they gave to other teams did not go unnoticed. 

Although they unfortunately did not win, the team conducted themselves extremely well during the virtual event. It is clear that they have really developed as public speakers and grown in confidence as a result of their dedication and time working on this project. They represented both themselves and the school to a very high standard and their contribution to this event has been very much appreciated. Well done to Reece, Matthew and Henry.

Miss L Harrison 



Advice for keeping your child safe online

Using the internet safely and positively is a key message that we promote in Helsby High School, and celebrating Safer Internet Day is a great opportunity for us to re-emphasise the online safety messages we deliver throughout the year. This year Safer Internet Day is focusing on exploring respect and relationships online. The Uk Safer Internet Centre has produced the following resources for use by Parents and Carers.

  • Organisations and resources please keep these in this order and link them to the resources attached
  • Conversation starters
  • Family activities
  • Family online safety plan
  • Learn more and get involved

Some other resources which you may find helpful in supporting your child online are:

  • Tips, advice and guides for parents and carers from the UK Safer Internet Centre
  • Advice for parents and carers from Childnet
  • Reviews and information about games, apps, TV shows and websites from Common Sense Media
  • Help on using parental controls and privacy settings from InternetMatters
  • Information and reporting of online grooming or sexual abuse from CEOP

Please do encourage your child to report any online safety concerns to:

  • in the event someone is imminent and immediate danger the emergency services should be contacted
  • yourself , a teacher or trusted adult ( such as a family member, scouts/guides leader or a youth worker)
  • using the Sharp Button on the school website
  • ​if it is a non urgent police matter use the CEOP button

If you need further help please do not hesitate to contact school.

CEOPthe-sharp-system


Stars of the Week 04/02/2022

Faith K11KSM
She has had perfect attendance so far at the year 11 tutoring and before the sessions start each week and she told me that she had applied for an apprenticeship week in Manchester over the October half term.

This apprenticeship week was with the big building companies in Manchester as she wants to be a project manager.

She applied herself to get the pace and travelled everyday to Manchester.

On the course she was expected to do all sorts of activities – making plans, explaining drawings, giving presentations to the other students and filming a youtube .
At the end of the week you actually got a design award and a £20 voucher.

When I spoke to her this week, it was quite obvious that she hadn’t shared any of this information.
Connor B12NLLConnor B & Caitlyn L nominated by EDO for excellent work in their work experience project
Caitlyn L12RCL“”
Connor B12RCLMs Tatham would like to nominate Connor B, Alex C, Boe K, James M, Maisie W, Jemima W and Ruby W for their outstanding engagement in their work experience project.
Alex C12AME“”
Boe K12NTU“”
James M12RPA“”
Maisie W12SRA“”
Jemima W12AME“”
Ella P11MMAJust wanted to pass on some comments from the after school tutors about Ella this week.

Apparently in both sessions she has massively outperformed what the tutors had expected of her.

She was motivated, persevered when it was difficult and generally had a very impressive attitude. For one of the sessions she was actually on her own with two tutors, so she would have been really pushed.
Izzy J11MMAThis may seem somewhat trivial, but I just wanted to pass on some nice news regarding some of the lovely behaviour displayed by our students. Izzy J and Amy H passed me on the corridor last night whilst they were waiting to start their after-school tuition, I was struggling with a massive armful of exercise book. They both stopped what they were doing, and of their own volition, insisted on taking them off me and walking me to my destination.
Amy H11MMA“”


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