Peddie Students Travel to Edinburgh, Scotland

By Kathryn Keyser ‘16
Staff Writer

Ten Peddie students and two faculty members traveled to Scotland to perform at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival— the largest arts festival in the world— in August.

“The entire atmosphere of the Fringe was addictive,” student performer Kelsie Sirak ’16 said. “Everyone was full of enthusiasm. As you walked down The Royal Mile, you would pass umpteen people canvasing for their shows. Everyone was happy.”

The students performed the play, The Ice Wolf, four times throughout their visit in Edinburgh at the Church Hill Theatre Studio. The Ice Wolf is an Inuit tale about a child named Anatou, who is exiled by the people in her village because they believe her fair hair will bring bad luck. Anatou retreats to the forest and meets the Wood God, who grants Anatou’s wish to become a wolf. As a wolf, Anatou seeks revenge by killing those who exiled her, which, however, causes the village leaders to hunt and kill her in order to prevent more murders. Before she dies, Anatou begs for forgiveness for her cruelty to the Wood God, who once again grants her wish so that her soul can live on.

“A lot of preparation went into the planning of the play. The students had to commit to a full term of class during spring term to rehearse,” Elizabeth Sherman, arts department teacher and director of the trip, said.

Aside from performing the Ice Wolf, the group went sightseeing, and saw a music performance called Military Tattoo and numerous other plays at the Fringe Festival, such as Chalk About, Thrill Me, Out of the Blue, Jeckle and Hyde, and Lights! Camera! Improvise!

“Seeing the 2014 Military Tattoo in Edinburgh was one of the greatest thrills of my life,” Chet Kazalski ’16 said. “Seeing all of the great nations of the world come together to celebrate culture and harmony was enough to bring tears to my eyes. I’ve never had a more thrilling experience at a show before in my life.”

Josie Anker ’15 agreed with Kazalski’s sentiments.

“It was so cool to be a part of something so huge,” Anker said. “Over 3,000 shows were performed throughout the festival. Besides seeing shows, exploring Edinburgh was amazing. The city is beautiful. We hiked up mountains, went for jogs, and wandered around the city just for fun.”

The students and faculty also visited London, where they did a workshop at the Globe Theatre, saw a play on West End, and went to Tate Modern, Britain’s national gallery of modern and contemporary art.

“We did a workshop at the Globe Theatre while we were in London. It was amazing! We had a tour and did a really fun workshop which happened to be on Romeo and Juliet, which is the play we are doing presently, so we were lucky,” Sherman said.

Overall, the attendees had a positive experience on their European adventure.

“I would go on this trip ten more times if I could!” Katie Clark ’16 said. “It was an unforgettable experience that I recall almost every day. From making new friends inside and outside of Peddie, to learning to let go of fear in order to try new things, to traveling in Edinburgh and London, this trip was one of the coolest things I’ve done in my life”.