Hundreds of parents, students and teachers packed the Maali Mia Theatre at Swan Christian College on Wednesday for Swan Christian Education Association (SCEA)’s 2017 Languages performance competition.
Now in its fourth year, ‘SCEAVision’ challenges students from Kindergarten to Year 12 across all SCEA schools to perform in any language other than English.
It also saw students from Northshore Christian Grammar School, which opened this year in Alkimos, perform for the first time.
“Australia is becoming an increasingly multicultural society, and encouraging not just skill in, but a love of, languages other than English is a key priority across our schools”, said SCEA’s Chief Executive Officer, Neil David.
“Thanks to an extremely dedicated group of languages and music teachers, this event demonstrates to students the joy of embracing other languages and cultures, far wider than in the classroom”, he said.
This year’s competition featured over 100 students across 37 performances in 15 languages, including Auslan, Afrikaans, Japanese, Indonesian, Italian, French, Mandarin, Spanish, German, Burmese, Maori and the Yorta Yorta indigenous language, and for the first time, performances in Farsi, Hawaiian and Gaelic.
The competition featured semi-final heats at each school, before the performances came together across four age categories on the night.
The competition also farewelled Swan Christian College student John Saxon, who performed this year for the fourth time in a fourth language, and won the Year 10-12 category with “Hamsafar” in Farsi.
A group of Ellenbrook Christian College students took out the Year 1-3 category, performing “Dapper Muis” in Afrikaans, while a student from Mundaring Christian College played guitar and sung a rendition of Halleluyah in Italian to win the Year 4-6 Category.
Anke Tamsen of Swan Christian College was the winner of the Year 7-9 category, performing “Lisa Se Clavier" in Afrikaans.
Mariel Howard, Languages Consultant for SCEA and organiser of the competition, thanked parents, students and teachers for their enthusiasm and encouraged them to continue their pursuit of foreign languages.
“Multilingualism and intercultural understanding are becoming crucial skills for the careers of the future”, said Mrs Howard.
“It is wonderful to see so many students celebrating the skills they are developing at school and at home, knowing that it promotes reconciliation and social harmony.
“We look forward to doing it again next year”, she said.