Education

Shepparton local wows Top Acts

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June 06, 2018

Charlotte McCosh performing on stage at Top Acts.

Charlotte McCosh (pictured) starred alongside Sebastian Mathieson as George and Winifred Banks in Initial Stages’ 2016 production of Mary Poppins.

Shepparton's Charlotte McCosh was selected to perform at Top Acts - a showcase of VCE performance talent.

Charlotte McCosh with Amy Carrick and Jess Parris who took part in the Zombies Return event in Shepparton in 2015.

When Charlotte McCosh saw students perform Top Acts for the first time, she dreamed of joining them on stage.

‘‘I watched it in Year 10 and 11 and thought — I wish I could be up there,’’ she said.

And the recently graduated Notre Dame College student did exactly that, performing at the Melbourne Recital Centre in mid-May at the showcase of VCE performance talent.

The two-hour concert featured performances from the most exemplary students in Victoria, with Charlotte performing her VCE theatre studies monologue in front of a huge audience.

She said the process began in Term 4 last year, when she was required to select a monologue from the Victorian Curriculum Assessment Authority-prescribed list.

‘‘I chose the character Valerie from the play The Weir,’’ she said.

The play sees a publican and his three regulars attempt to spook Valerie — a newcomer to town from Dublin — but end up frightened themselves.

‘‘It’s about a rural Irish pub where these men gather and share stories of their past,’’ Charlotte said.

‘‘This particular night it’s winter and it’s a bit eerie so they decided to share ghost stories.

‘‘So (Valerie) tells a very important story about her daughter — she ends up drowning and it’s a haunting monologue about that.’’

Charlotte performed the piece for exam assessors at the Eastbank Centre during the exam period and soon discovered she had been selected to perform at Top Class, alongside fellow Notre Dame College students Nick Murdoch and Beth Robinson.

‘‘They’re very talented as well; to have three from the one class get into Top Class is very rare,’’ she said.

She said this was the first part of the process, offered to students who received an A+ on their monologue performance, and she was required to audition in Melbourne.

‘‘To me, getting the audition was an honour already — I didn’t mind if I didn’t get in,’’ Charlotte said.

But the talented Shepparton student and Initial Stages performer was selected to perform at the Playhouse Theatre in Melbourne.

‘‘There’s a creative director in the audience and he chooses the Top Acts performers,’’ Charlotte said.

Clearly, she made an impression on the selector.

Taking to the stage just last month, Charlotte said it was an incredibly different experience to be on stage, rather than watching the Top Acts DVDs at her school.

‘‘Being up there, it’s a different perspective,’’ she said.

‘‘I haven’t really taken in how much of an achievement it is but I’m really proud of myself because I worked so hard.’’

Charlotte credited much of her drive and determination to continue with theatre to her teacher Casey Fogarty and Initial Stages director Helen Janke.

‘‘I started at Initial before I went to Notre — that really encouraged me and inspired me to keep going with theatre,’’ she said.

But it was not just the Recital Centre stage that was graced by Charlotte’s talents this year.

A talented singer, Charlotte has also performed at the Secret Garden and Winter Sessions gigs held throughout the Goulburn Valley.

‘‘I want to go and study music (next year),’’ she said.

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