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Monday, 28 November 2011

Maggie Boyles in university stage début

Massimo Silvani writes:

Maggie Boyles as Kate in All My Sons.

My travels often take me far from  Chavagnes. But never so far that I can't keep up with events in and around that school's historic walls.

I've just now heard something of young Mary ("Maggie") Boyles, for example. (Although Chavagnes is a boys-only school, there are sometimes one or two exceptional daughters of teachers in the A-level class, just to keep the boys on their toes.)

I gather that Maggie enrolled this autumn at the University of Kansas where she is working toward a degree in theatre with a focus on performance.

Her efforts in this direction had been encouraged while she studied at Chavagnes. Because of the university's excellent reputation for developing young talent for the stage, Maggie chose it as the place for furthering her ambitions.

Hardly had she completed auditions for entry into the theatre programme but that her talent was being celebrated, at least so I'm told, far and wide across the campus. Apparently she had so impressed the judges that they wasted no time in casting her in the principal role of Kate in Arthur Miller's play "All My Sons".

Difficult to believe? Yes. But it's true. And there's more to come.

Remarkably she was alone among first-year students to have been awarded a lead. It's said that this unique for a freshman. "My hopes have been given a terrific boost," Maggie told us in telephone conversation from the campus at Lawrence, Kansas, after the curtain came down on the final performance. By the way,” she added with a natural dramatic flourish, “I've registered in Jewish studies as a minor.”

In a barely concealed expression of enthusiasm, the University of Kansas's Head of Theatre John Staniunas, member of the panel that auditioned Maggie, had this to say

"I found her to be incredibly honest and very giving as an actor. She really knew how to share the stage and be very true to her emotions."

Pennsylvania-born Maggie moved with her family in 2008 to a small village near Chavagnes. She participated in a wide variety of the College’s productions including Wilde’s The Importance of Being Earnest and a trio of Shakesperean offerings: Macbeth, A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Much Ado about Nothing. This was complemented by a series of poetry recitations and dramatised readings throught the school year.

Her career ambitions took flight during the production of Macbeth staged by the College and Dr. Tom Conlon's direction of her in the role of Lady Macbeth. His comment reflects the general experience of Maggie's qualities:

"A real pleasure to work with; Maggie always gives 100%."

A rigorous schedule of preparation for her Kansas auditions was devised by Ken Asch who is responsible for the College’s programme of recitations and Shakespeare Week, so special thanks to him for his dedication.

“All My Sons” was the University of Kansas's second production this new season. For full information about the theatre department and future productions, please visit:


Saturday, 6 August 2011

Why study the Humanities?

“We call those studies liberal, then, which are worthy of a free man: they are those through which virtue and wisdom are either practised or sought and by which the body and mind is disposed to the best things. “ Pier Paolo Vergerio,
The Character and Studies Befitting a Free-Born Youth (c. 1402.)

At Chavagnes the study of the humanities is in the great tradition of liberal education. This kind of education is not simply a dry theory, nor is it restricted to those subjects now named humanities, although its principles are mostly clearly seen in our teaching of these disciplines.

Liberal education is the transmission of our great western cultural patrimony to our young. But it is more than that: its aim is to make every student his own man: free and capable of using his reason, fit to take part in the “great conversation” begun in fifth-century Athens and continuing to this day.

More at www.cursus.chavagnes.org

Wednesday, 3 August 2011

New vision of science ... from our curriculum site

Science, where the senses and the intellect meet …
Science is about bridging the world of the senses – the tangible, the audible, the visible – with the world of the intellect – the far reaching patterns of abstract concepts which allow us to impose order and system on what we perceive through the senses. The College believes that both piers of the bridge should be buttressed. Through a rich program of practical activities the students are exposed to as much real experience of see, hear and touch scientific phenomena as possible. On the other pier, the College is committed to a careful and scrupulous teaching of scientific concepts, informed both by historical awareness of their genesis and the determination to impart ideas in a clear, rigorous, but accessible way.

See more at www.cursus.chavagnes.org

Wednesday, 27 July 2011

Saturday, 16 July 2011

Friday, 15 July 2011

Chavagnes schemes of work

We're really getting organised at Chavagnes: check out our schemes of work for September 2011 : www.cursus.chavagnes.org and follow the links.

There are already SOWs for Physics Yr 8, Maths, Yr, 9, Greek and Music year 9, Music Year 8 and 9, English Year 10, plus Religion, History and Latin for most of Yrs 7-9 ...

It's hard work, but most classes and subjects should be available within the next week.

We'd welcome any feedback from parents and friends.

Thursday, 26 May 2011

Wednesday, 25 May 2011

Bishop Alain Castet to celebrate Mass of Thanksgiving

Bishop Alain Castet, our diocesan bishop, will be celebrating a Mass of Thanksgiving for the academic year at the College on Monday 20th June at 12 o'clock. All are welcome.

Tuesday, 24 May 2011

Father Bede Rowe to be new chaplain

Father Bede Rowe of the Diocese of Clifton is to take up the post of Chaplain at Chavagnes International College from September 2011.

Wednesday, 18 May 2011

Scout Weekend

On Saturday the 27 March we woke up to a sunny day- a good omen for the long walk ahead. Leaving soon after midday, the temptation for a little detour prevailed, and we only arrived at our destination, the abbaye de la Grainetière, near Parc soubise, late in the afternoon. We were allowed to pitch our tent in the cloister, and had an abundant dinner of food that we had brought with us. When we woke up on Sunday it had started raining, so we had breakfast in our tent.Soon after, we attended mass in the monastery's chapel. The way back proved a lot harder, because, apart from being longer, we were already tired, and the rain made our bags heavier. However, we all made it back to school safe and sound, and enjoyed our school dinner with great enthousiasm. Ironically, it was those who complained on the walk who stayed up longest. It was a great experience, and we would like to do it again.

Tuesday, 26 April 2011

Chavagnes Academic Programme

Visit our new site outlining our academic courses in detail, including our current timetables.


Friday, 1 April 2011

Teaching vacancies

Check out the College website for information on teaching vacancies for September 2011:

Monday, 28 March 2011

Sunday outing

Mr McDermott has been recovering more quickly than expected. After making a dramatic return in an ambulance, he only spent a few weeks in a wheelchair and was then able to follow us around on foot. This was met with a natural sense of joy at his returning health mixed with a slight sense of regret from pupils and staff alike that they were once again pursuable.

Sunday afternoons at a boarding school are the only times where it is possible to undertake anything spectacular in our free time. However, most people prefer to wile away the time sitting in boredom in front of a computer. Last Sunday, however, there was an opportunity to go to the opera to enjoy a performance of Falstaff. The performance was in Italian, with surtitles in French. Not being opera aficionados, we waited for the appearance of the fat lady, which would signal the approaching end. In fact the only thespian of imposing stature was Falstaff, the pompous, bigheaded and comical main character. Falstaff is also a tragic person who, due to his appearance, cannot find love. He falls in love with two ladies, who then play tricks on him; such as throwing him into a river with a load of dirty washing.