St Andrew's Cathedral School

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Record breaking twenty-seven nominations for St Andrew’s Cathedral School students…


Our 2023 Year 12 Cohort has broken St Andrew’s Cathedral School’s record for the number of students to be nominated for the HSC Showcase! Twenty-seven of our students’ major projects have been recognised by the NSW Education Standards Authority and have been classed as “exemplary works”.

Each year, HSC students spend several months creating and developing their HSC Major Projects. These projects provide students with free reign to express themselves through their art, music, drama, textiles or technological projects. HSC Major Projects require consistent effort over an extended period and encourages students to dive deep into the creative process.

This year’s nominations are for a diverse range of work across the arts. Nominations include three for SHAPE (design and technology), five for ARTEXPRESS (visual arts), six for ENCORE (music), and 12 for ONSTAGE (drama) and 1 for YOUNG WRITERS (written work).

Head of School, Dr Julie McGonigle, said that the School community was naturally delighted by the high quality creativity and innovation demonstrated by the students.

“Our 2023 Year 12 cohort has shown diverse creative drive for many years and, we are thrilled that this is being recognised in the HSC,” Dr McGonigle said.

“HSC Showcase is a collection of the State’s highest quality HSC performances, artworks and designs across the creative subjects – so to have 26 students nominated shows the depth and breadth of expertise developed across the cohort, and that doesn’t include those taking the creative and expressive subjects within the International Baccalaureate Diploma.

“We know that each student is gifted for a purpose, and as a School we aim to nurture that giftedness, which includes a strong focus on the arts.

“I want to congratulate all our nominees this year – each of these students has shown perceptive attentiveness to their craft and a rare ability to know and engage their audience. The diversity of content across each discipline is testament to expert teachers who foster intensely personal and inspired creativity.”

“We know that each student is gifted for a purpose, and as a School we aim to nurture that giftedness, which includes a strong focus on the arts.”

Dr julie mcgonigle, head of school

This year, our students have gone above and beyond for their projects. Year 12 student Finnian Agnew took sustainability to a whole new level by growing his own wheat grass fabric, wheat grass felt and mulberry bark lace to create his Textiles major project of wearable art.

In paying homage to his grandmother’s hometown, Patonga, Finnian understood that sustainability was a major concern for the area. His development of sustainable fabrics also sought to display the intricate aesthetic qualities of Patonga’s fishing nets and geological formations.

Finnian said: “This project celebrates the natural beauty of the town of Patonga. Practicing growing the fabric under different conditions was definitely a labour of love, but the result was better than I could ever have imagined!”

We are delighted to announce that Finnian’s project was not only nominated, but also selected to be featured at the 2024 SHAPE Exhibition. For more information about this exhibition click here.

Olivia Phoon and Samuel Mackenzie were two students selected for ARTEXPRESS out of the five St Andrew’s Cathedral School students nominated.

Olivia Phoon’s series of beautifully blurred images titled ‘Obscured Connections’ is informed by ideas relating to ancestry and untold stories. Olivia and Sam’s artwork will be on display at the ARTEXPRESS Exhibition in 2024. For more information about this exhibition click here.