ON STAGE: Whitsunday Regional Council mayor Andrew Willcox, Proserpine State High School principal Don McDermid, school captain Imogen Tulk, member for Mackay Julieanne Gilbert, school captain Aiden Payet and member for Whitsunday Jason Costigan turning the sod for the new entertainment centre.
ON STAGE: Whitsunday Regional Council mayor Andrew Willcox, Proserpine State High School principal Don McDermid, school captain Imogen Tulk, member for Mackay Julieanne Gilbert, school captain Aiden Payet and member for Whitsunday Jason Costigan turning the sod for the new entertainment centre.

Prossie students will soon tread the boards

PROSERPINE State High School students could soon have their name in lights headlining the best orchestras, theatres and ballets in the state.

At least that was the vision coming from Assistant State Development Minister Julieanne Gilbert after she turned the sod on the site of the school's new performing arts centre today.

The centre is one of several projects carried out under the Palaszczuk Government's $235 million Renewing Our Schools program and is due to be completed in 2021.

Proserpine State High School principal Don McDermid said the performing arts centre would help foster the arts in the region and he looked forward to helping students take to the stage.

"It is such an amazing opportunity to cater for the talents of students, and we should never underestimate what talent we have in regional schools among our students," he said.

"To be able to give them the latest facilities to fulfil their interests and passions is just such an asset to the school.

"It will have the latest modern facilities in drama and dance, opening up to a fully-functional theatre and completed by amenities, dressing rooms, media editing spaces and instrumental music rooms."

The performing arts centre will also seat 300 people and include a music classroom and instrumental music classroom, a green screen room and control room, as well as storage rooms, dressing rooms, foyer and kiosk.

An impression of the new entertainment centre at Proserpine State High School.
An impression of the new entertainment centre at Proserpine State High School.

Mrs Gilbert, who is the member for Mackay, also looked forward to the future of the arts in Proserpine and said previous productions put on by the school had been "top notch".

"Whether you want to be involved in theatre, lighting, sound production, back of stage, or you want to be on stage, you can do that training at school and get a taste for it," she said.

"We're developing those young people who will be part of our theatre groups and perform on our stages in the big adult theatres in town.

"And the local convention centre is also being rebuilt, so (there will be) two state-of-the-art facilities here for the Proserpine Whitsunday region, so this centre has got the potential to be the cultural hub for the Whitsundays."

The PAC is just one of the projects under the Renewing Our Schools Program for which the school received $12 million funding.

The funding also includes the upgrade of the administration building which will commence in the Easter holidays as well as various other student spaces.


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