“The future of the Stahl is bright!”
Last week the UN Inspector came to town… or did he?!
David Farr’s contemporary spin on Gogol’s The Government Inspector relocates the action to an undisclosed nation, formally part of the Soviet Union. Hilarity ensues when the President and his aides desperately conspire to keep embezzled IMF loans, election rigging and general political unrest from Martin Remmington Gammon who is believed to be the much-feared UN Inspector. The joke is of course that Gammon is not the official that that they think but a former employee of Foxton’s estate agents!
Director of the Stahl Theatre, Naomi Jones commented, “The production, which was deftly directed by Oundle’s Head of Drama, Matt Burlington, featured some glorious swan-songs and some thrilling debuts. Upper Sixth formers, Tom Younger (17), and Adam Oliver (18), both gracing the Stahl stage for the final time, gave two power-house performances as Martin Gammon and the President respectively. They showed great rhetorical skill and expert comic timing.”
Making an equally impressive impact on the production were the first appearances of Minty Kunzer (13) and Sunny Woodend (14). Minty as the much-maligned Sammy, Gammon’s side-kick, gave an impressively inventive depiction of the character. Her diminutive stature underlining the absurdity of the President’s assumption that she was the UN Inspector’s Head of Security. Sunny gave an almost too real portrayal of the image obsessed Maria (daughter of the President). Her adolescent hair-flicks and unflinching disrespect for her parents were both wonderfully familiar and very funny.
Naomi added, “But, as always, it was the strength of the ensemble playing which made this a truly special evening of theatre. The whole cast has such a fine understanding of this wordy, satirical text that they were able to communicate all of the plot-line’s twists and turns with machine gun-like pace and accuracy. As one generation of Stahl stars pass the baton to the next generation it is heartening to see that the future of theatre at Oundle is in capable hands.”
Background Information on Oundle School
Oundle School is situated in the quintessentially English market town of Oundle, about 90 miles north of London. The School’s buildings, dating from the 17th to the 21st centuries, are dispersed throughout the town, which is, to a large extent, its campus.
The School’s history dates back to 1556, when Sir William Laxton, Master of the Worshipful Company of Grocers and Lord Mayor of London, endowed and re-founded the original Oundle Grammar School, of which he was a former pupil. In 1876, the Grocer’s Company divided the School into two parts; Laxton Grammar School, primarily for the inhabitants of the town, and Oundle School, primarily for pupils from further afield. In 2000, the Grocers’ Company reunited the two schools under the common name of Oundle School and retained the name of Laxton for the day House.
At the beginning of the 20th century, Oundle was put firmly on the map of leading English public schools by its most famous headmaster, F W Sanderson, who established Oundle’s reputation as one of the great science and engineering schools, a reputation still renowned today. In 2007, SciTec - a major and ground-breaking new science complex - opened, housing 16 state-of-the-art laboratories. The School is now embarking on a large SciTec Campus development project which will see a new Mathematics department constructed adjacent to SciTec as well as a significant upgrade to the Design and Technology department within the Patrick Engineering Centre. Due for completion in September 2016, the development will unite Science, Mathematics, Design, Technology and Engineering both physically and philosophically, enabling pupils to move seamlessly from theory to practice and from pure science to the achievement of a workable technology. A concurrent Sports MasterPlan will upgrade sporting facilities across the School over the next few years, including a new 1st XI cricket pavilion which opened in April 2015 and new astroturfs due to be completed this year.
There are currently 1110 pupils on roll at Oundle School, with 860 boarders and 250 day pupils. Also within the Corporation of Oundle School is Laxton Junior School, a day school for children aged 4 to 11.