14 Oct 2022

2022 Your Voice Eyes Open - All participating students onstage for the finale of the evening

“The lens through which one views the world is shaped by the breadth and depth of opportunities afforded and, through life experiences which cultivate a visceral connection with others.
Your Voice. Eyes Open. is a student voice platform from which students of Xavier College and Loreto Toorak can express themselves through a creative medium, to advocate for change, champion for the marginalised, and challenge perspectives which they feel may lack foresight or intellectual insight.” Melissa Etherton, Director of Innovation and Enterprise (Loreto Toorak)

Your Voice. Eyes Open. is a collaborative program between Loreto Toorak and Xavier College that brings together aspiring writers, poets, artists, musicians, and actors in Years 5-12 across both schools. This collaboration provides students the opportunity to develop and express their creative skills in a cross-school, cross-age setting. Led by Trish Trchala, Head of Learning Resources (Xavier College), and Caterina Chng, Head of Loreto Academy (Loreto Toorak), a team of staff from both schools supported the students through a series of workshops.

“We are so lucky to have the unwavering support of dedicated staff in this program; they encourage us to delve into our passions and to find the medium of communication that develops our self-expression.” Mia R, Year 9 (Loreto Toorak)

After a series of creative workshops that allowed for deep reflection and creativity, students presented their interpretation of this year’s theme at the Performance evening at the Xavier College Eldon Hogan Performing Arts Centre.

2022 Your Voice Eyes Open - The evening began with a gallery of all artworks
Prior to the start of the performances, students engaged with the audience and discussed their art in the gallery space.

2022 Your Voice Eyes Open - Welcome performance by the Djirri Djirri Wurundjeri Women’s Dance Group
The evening commenced with a moving welcome performance by the Djirri Djirri Wurundjeri Women’s Dance Group.

Students presented their art and digital designs, sharing original music compositions and short films, and reading poetry and short story excerpts. They graced the stage with confidence, expressing their true voice, and providing the audience with a narrative to showcase a future full of promise.

“What can Happen with a Little Hope” by Ava E, Ella L and Annabel R (Year 5)
“What can Happen with a Little Hope” by Ava E, Ella L and Annabel R (Year 5)

Year 5 Loreto Toorak students Ava E, Ella L, and Annabel R explored the long-standing issue of racism through a short story about a poet in the 1960s. This short story was then adapted into a stage performance by the three students.

Bella D (Year 10) with her artwork "Destroying Beautiful Country"
“Destroying Beautiful Country” by Bella D (Year 10)

Year 10 Loreto Toorak student Bella’s “Destroying Beautiful Country” depicts Russian President Vladimir Putin through a photo mosaic, made up of smaller images of Ukraine throughout the war. The devastating impact that the war has had on Ukraine’s people has changed the world’s view on both Russia and Ukraine.

“The Windows into our World” by Felicia D (Year 9), Mia S (Year 9), Lucas M (Xavier), and Tomas M (Xavier)
“The Windows into our World” by Felicia D (Year 9), Mia S (Year 9), Lucas M (Xavier), and Tomas M (Xavier)

“The Windows Into Our World” is a collaborative art piece from a group of four Loreto Toorak and Xavier College students. Having a shared interest in the importance of the environment and how it affects their lives, the group depicted the devastating effects of industrialisation and climate on the environment in their art piece.

“We are extremely proud of the students who have willingly participated in this collaborative project. Their eagerness, courage, and perseverance in pursuing their projects are proof of their desire to broaden their horizons and speak to us about their perception of the world. This is their voice, and we are privileged to bear witness.” Caterina Chng, Head of Loreto Academy (Loreto Toorak)

A digital copy of the publication is available on Issuu to appreciate all the works of the students:
https://issuu.com/loretomandevillehalltoorak/docs/yveo_publication_digital.