THEY say all the world is a stage and students at Priestley College have certainly proved that to be true in the pandemic year.

For in a bid to keep up despite the challenges of the lockdowns and the coronavirus tier-system, the performing arts and drama cohorts have been taking cues from their kitchens, living rooms and, on sunnier days, their gardens.

“It’s meant we had to adapt the choreography because some of the students might not have been able to use the floor while others just haven’t got that much space to move around,” said tutor Nancy Serjeant.

For the periods of lockdown, Nancy turned her garage into a space from which she could share fitness classes via Instagram Live with her students.

Despite all the best intentions, not everything went to plan.

Some students viewed choreography via zoom, a platform that can mirror the image seen by viewers so moves had to be reversed back in the college theatre.

Because of the current rules, lessons at Priestley are currently all being held remotely on 'Google Classroom'.

But before the third lockdown, performing arts students faced their fair share of challenges.

They had to learn how to perform and project their singing voice while wearing a face covering.

Warrington Guardian: The show must go onThe show must go on

The winter showcase before the lockdown

Pair work has also been tricky due to social distancing rules meaning performers had to develop choreography that looks like the partners have a connection without any actual contact.

This month all their efforts came to fruition with the Winter Showcase, which provides an opportunity to assess all that students have learned this year.

Normally they would have had an audience of family and friends to offer moral support.

This year it was just a small bubble of their peers.

“It’s a strange feeling but we’ve all been very supportive of one another throughout the whole experience,” added Ollie White, who previously studied at Abbeygate College.

Despite the uncertainty many students are planning their next steps with many hoping to study at the UK’s finest theatre schools.

Normally lecturers from those establishments would visit Priestley to share words of wisdom about applications and auditions, but this year all that has taken place virtually.

Towards the end of last year, head of BA Acting Philip Weaver spoke to drama students about the opportunities available to them at East 15 Acting School in Essex.

Other guest professionals have included former Priestley students Tara Rose Moore and Spencer D. Jones who focussed on musical theatre jazz and contemporary dance as well as audition tips.

“It’s been a difficult chapter because, as performers, we tend to be very physical people and we create supportive bonds to ensure they get the most out of their training,” said Nancy.

“We have managed to find a way and the students have continued to shine while learning in a virtual world.”