Centre for the arts unveiled

By Liam Nash

Cobram Anglican Grammar School students, faculty and staff gathered on Thursday to celebrate the unveiling of the new performing arts centre.

Members of the Anglican Schools Commission travelled from Western Australia for the official opening of the large, multi-purpose building.

“The performing arts centre has been an extremely welcome addition to our school and we are very grateful for its construction,” principal Steve Gale said.

“As a centre it offers opportunities for students in any of the performance spaces, that is across from preps all the way through to Year 12.”

Classroom areas have been added inside the building, while a recording studio and state-of-the art audio and visual equipment are in place to provide students with a wide scope of creative tools.

Schematics for the building were first laid out in late 2017 after the need for a performing arts centre was recognised by the board, with most of the construction carried out last year.

The centre has been open for use this year, with many of the finishing touches applied recently, before the ceremony signalled the completion of the venue.

“It is well used and well utilised, and it is very much appreciated by both students and staff,” Mr Gale said.

The ceremony was a celebration of the school’s progression as it prepares to enter its 20th year as a learning facility, as Anglican Schools Commission Board chair Barbara Godwin delivered a speech.

Mr Gale, School Council chair Trevor Noonan and Reverend Peter Laurence also spoke at the ceremony, before Wangaratta Diocesan Bishop John Parkes consecrated and blessed the building.

As a part of the event, pupils Lacey Eddy and Makayla Pestrucci delivered a rendition of Blue Skies from the school's coming musical The X Factory to round out the morning.

For Mr Hale, the opening of the building typifies the systemic growth of the school he has seen during his time at the helm of Cobram Anglican Grammar School, a lot of which has happened in recent years.

“(To watch the school grow is) such a joy, I started when we had 200 and are looking to open with 420 next year and a lot of that growth has happened over last five years,” he said.

“The people of Cobram hearing our message of inclusion, pastoral care and a message of support and encouragement.

“Wherever the students interests lie, we are developing a school that can cater for them.”