Saturday, 29 May 2010

The Judges Written Comments....

"The technique you used for your art is unique and looks awesome"
"You guys were really entertaining"
"I loved your matter of fact jokes! The deck of cards and leaves were great."
"Thank you for a GREAT performance"
"Nice puppets"
"Thank you for your entertaining presentation"
"I enjoyed your presentation"
"Your story made me laugh"
"Sweet magic skills... Great job!"
"Hilarious! Wonderful job"
"Thank you for sharing your hard work with us"
"I loved the back-and-forth between the two puppets"
We were so so proud of the team yesterday. Their performance was really good - the audience laughed in all the right places and one of the appraisers was in HYSTERICS! They absolutely pulled it out of the bag and did one of their best performances to date, and we were delighted with them.

They will leave America feeling they did themselves justice, and that is all we could ask of them. Beyond that, the highlights of their trip wont just be performing on stage in front of a full auditorium, but the independence and maturity they've displayed throughout, the friends they've made (especially their buddy team from Kentucky who they waved an emotional goodbye to this morning) and the way they've learnt to work together and value each other.... and the way that they managed to cram themselves into a London taxi with 12 other competitors and drive around downtown Knoxville!!

Their instant challenge is this morning at 10am, and then we are going to watch the other British team compete this afternoon before enjoying our final night in the states.

Well done team! You were fabulous!

Friday, 28 May 2010

Quiz time!

How many D.I. competitors can you fit in a taxi? Answers on a postcard please.

30 minutes to go..

Although it is 7.30pm in the UK it is only 2.30pm over here... and at 3pm, we are leaving the hotel to walk down to the theatre ready for our performance at 5, so the team are currently in their rooms putting the finishing touches on make-up and costumes and scenery.

Last night they enjoyed a meal in the market square and then hung out with their buddy team for a while. Their buddy team are also coming to the theatre with them to watch them perform and cheer them on.

No more to say for now! The heat is on and there are lots of butterflies in tummies. We just telephoned their room to remind them about passes... and were greeted with "THANKS, BUT WE NEED TO GET BACK TO WORK, BYE!". It's clearly feverishly busy up there. Thanks for your messages of support yesterday, we will pass them all on just before they perform to give them that little boost!

Thursday, 27 May 2010

A Day of Rehearsals...

The kids have all worked really hard today. This morning they worked from 9.45 to 11.30 to get all their props together and check they remembered their lines. We then went shopping for Tennessee souvenirs on the University strip and had lunch and pin trading.

After lunch we stopped by the theatre to view some of the competition. I think the team were a little bit intimidated by the quality of some of the American solutions; they have the advantage of being able to bring huge flashy sets by road. Unfortunately we can't really check something of that size onto the aeroplane as hand luggage - we will have to rely on their personalities and energy to carry the performance!

They were briefly a little bit down about this, but they gradually reenergised and the positive outcome is that the kids are now really motivated to want to make their performance better, so they headed to their hotel rooms to beaver away on props and costumes and rehearsals AGAIN. We are shortly going to meet them, and give them the evening off. I think we're talking about going for a meal in the market square - now that the sun is shining again after a brief rain storm - as a reward for all of their hard work today.

It's been a little rollercoaster for them all, but it is ending positively. Wish us luck for the performance tomorrow!!!

Wednesday, 26 May 2010

A Quick Video

By the magic of bluetooth....

The Opening Ceremony

The Opening Ceremony was brilliant! The team joined with another from the UK and paraded around a packed arena in front of thousands and thousands of people, sang the national anthem and enjoyed a spectacular firework display.

It was followed by the international party where we met our buddy team from Kentucky - who are lovely. The kids are getting on with them really well, and some particularly interesting conversations have sprung up. Including:

"Do you have Easter in America?"
"Is Barack Obama your king?"
"Does Kentucky fried chicken come from Kentucky, and did that guy with the beard really exist?"

Bed now ready for rehearsals tomorrow.