BHS unveils new theatre, music suites
On Thursday, January 16, BHS held an event to celebrate the naming of the new “Alvin Ferreira Family Theatre” and the new “Music Suites donated by Barrie Trimingham and David Pierson” and also share the special 125th Anniversary exhibition.
In attendance were staff, Board members, students, parents, donors, and alumni all who have supported the Leading the Way Campaign since its inception over two years ago. The former “Little Gym” was repurposed over the summer and turned into a black box theatre. The new theatre is a multi-purpose performance space which has already been used for parent presentations and student performances. The moveable staging allows for classes to adapt the space to their needs, and the state of the art equipment and lighting also provides students with opportunities to learn and improve their technical skills. The new music suites were also completed over the summer and now boast 11 practice rooms, a soundproof recording studio and updated dance and movement spaces.
Board Chair, Mariette Savoie, welcomed the group, and stated that looking back at the School’s history provided perspective on where BHS is today: “Looking back at the School’s history is a poignant reminder of where BHS started, and the constant vision that has seen the School through many changes. BHS has always been forward thinking and focused on the education of young women. This new Innovation Centre and the renovated Music Suites and theatre are the 21st Century update which will firmly place BHS as the school of the future in Bermuda.”
Head of School, Linda Parker also spoke to those in attendance, welcoming the generous donors who had made these renovations and upgrades possible: “Over two and a half years ago, we officially launched the Leading the Way Campaign for Innovation to raise funds to build the Innovation Centre and renovate the Arts Wing. Untold hours of work have gone on behind the scenes over the past couple of years, with our dedicated team of staff and volunteers raising the funds needed. To all of you who are here this evening, I say an enormous thank you.
We also recognised early on that it was vital to improve our Arts facilities in order to foster our students’ dramatic, artistic and musical creativity. Thanks to generous donors like Pamela Ferreira, Barrie Trimingham and David Pierson, we have been able to make our dream a reality.
At BHS, you will always find a student singing, or playing music — music is encouraged from day one, and so much early learning takes place through song, and music is an integral part of learning all the way through school. I am always amazed at the musical talent of our students, and since September, so many students have taken advantage of the extra number of practice rooms.”
Pamela Ferreira spoke on behalf of her family to dedicate the naming of the theatre to her late husband, Alvin Ferreira: “Tonight we are here celebrating the A in STEAM, A for the Arts. My late husband, and Kristie and David’s father, Alvin Ferreira, was a great man … he loved the arts, and particularly enjoyed watching his daughter command many a room. He would be so proud of her standing here tonight.” Kristie unveiled the sign to dedicate the theatre in her late father’s name.
After Mrs. Parker introduced the naming of the new Music Suites, she invited Barrie Trimingham to say a few words. As an alumna of BHS, Ms. Trimingham recalled her time fondly at school learning to play the piano and studying music theory. It was her continued love of music which inspired her to support the expansion of the School and the renovation of the music areas. “Since my days here at BHS, a lot has changed. David and I were so impressed and inspired by what is going on at this school now; beyond my wildest dreams, and we are absolutely delighted to be able to support the Arts at BHS.” Mr. Pierson unveiled the plaque for the new Music Suites.
Another highlight of the evening was the official unveiling of the 125th Anniversary Exhibit. Originally planned for September, Hurricane Humberto and Tropical Storm Jerry delayed the unveiling. Over many months, staff combed through the archives of photos and other memorabilia to gather content for the exhibit. Alumni were invited to share their memories and ephemera which added an extra layer of nostalgia to the final exhibit. BHS partnered with local design firm, Uber Super Duper, and worked together on the overall vision of the final product which shows a timeline of the School’s history from the first day in 1894 through to the present day.
Linda Parker spoke about the exhibit: “We are also pleased to finally be able to show off our 125th exhibit which is a beautiful homage to the past 125 years of our history …. We hope you enjoy the sense of nostalgia it evokes and we would like to thank our staff who were involved, and the design team of Sami Lil and Lucy Russell from Uber Super Duper who are here this evening.”
Guests were then treated to a sneak peek of the upcoming school production of The Little Mermaid which will be held in the Queen Elizabeth Hall from January 30 — February 2nd. Students performed a song called “Positoovity” from the show.
The Innovation Centre will include five new Science laboratories, two Computer Science and Robotics labs, a MakerSpace, a Digital Media Room, a Learning Commons and Library, and a Leadership Centre for Girls. Construction will be completed by September for the start of the 2020 school year.
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