What started as an epidemiological writing activity for students at Jack Cook’s School in Terrace, has morphed into a full-fledged traveling band to hit Prince Rupert on June 23.
Marc-Olivier Chouinard, a music teacher at the French School of Terrace for five years, started the project to keep the students engaged.
“We wrote the songs,” he said. But after five or six songs, me [thought] Why not put it in a musical with a little more drama. »
Chouinard and Terrace students collaborated with François Tardif, an old friend of Chouinard’s in Quebec over Zoom and Flammèche’s music on Skeena was born.
“It’s very interesting, because it all started with the children’s ideas,” said Olivier.
The story revolves around Pietra, a girl who can talk to animals and her friends, Laxibu the leader of the wolves, Richard the Fox, Aguila and Raguedy, the eagles and all the salmon in Skeena Valley, who live in harmony until the arrival of lumberjack Bob La Flamesh.
The summary of the play says: “This villain is a real destroyer of the beauty of nature.” “With the help of Richard the Fox, he will try to take control of the beautiful Skeena Valley. Will the people of Skeena Valley survive his attempt to destroy them?”
After two years working on the musical, they made their debut in June 2022 at the R.E.M. Lee All School Theater in the Porch. For English speaking students, English subtitles were shown on the screen.
But Chouinard and the school did not finish the Flammèche in Skeena. This year, they wanted to take the show on the road.
Chouinard said he was well received at Kitimat on 2 June and at Smithers on 13 June.
At Smithers, they were unable to get the Della Herman Theater and ended up putting it in Glenwood Hall.
“We changed the show to a smaller stage and smaller audience and it turned out to be a lot of fun for all the kids. We had Hazelton students, immersion students attending the show, and Smithers students, so it was a lot of fun.”
He also noted that all 62 members of the Jack-Cook Society School play a role in the production, whether it be acting, producing, playing in the band, or executing the technical aspects of its outfits.
In Prince Rupert, a free performance will take place at the Leicester Center on 23 June at 1pm, sponsored by La Francophonie and La Francophonie in Nor Ouest (AFFNO).
“AFFNO is pleased to be supporting this Jack Cook School tour,” said Patrick Witwicky, AFFNO Executive Director. “They wrote it and produced it, and the whole school is involved… It’s wonderful. And so sweet. The play also deals with the importance of the River of Tranquility and the nature that depends on it and its tributaries.”
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