Marking the culmination of a great amount of hard work, determination and effort as well as a huge helping of fun, the students from the Enniskillen Helen O'Grady Drama Academy proudly presented their end of year productions in the Ardhowen Theatre.

The Lower Primary class were first to perform for a huge audience of parents and friends. The children presented an enchanting play entitled, "The Chicken-Hearted Fox" where the workforce on the Giles' farm have always tried to be careful to secure the premises at night so the foxes can not steal their chickens. Although they take every possible precaution, somehow the hungry Freddy and Frances Fox manage to gain access. Tired workers are roused from the beds and, although the foxes are caught, Mrs. Giles takes pity and finds a better way to provide them with the chicken they love! The children's dynamic and energetic performances won them wave after wave of well-deserved applause from their appreciative audience.

Upper Primary children, aged 8 - 11 years, then provided even more entertainment with the aptly named "Jet-Lag Tours". In the play excited tourists wait expectantly at the airport for their tour guides to arrive. It seems the company has been involved in a colossal mix up with the bus companies and the delay at the start of their holiday leaves tourists wondering how the rest of the trip will go. After visits to turnip farms and flamingo reserves, they decide not to face the same gruelling journey on the way home! The class was excellent, clearly demonstrating their prowess with vocal skills and expressive acting.

The fantastically talented Youth Theatre students presented an outstanding play using New York accents and gangster-ish attitudes to effectively characterise some notorious gangland figures like Luke the Duke and Big Benny, who have been engaged in vicious rivalry for some time. Duchess Daisy's Bar is the home of double dealing and general mayhem whenever the two gangs get together. When Benny's 'innocent' daughter turns up unannounced he has to call on Luke to cover for him, so his little girl believes his business is 'legit'. However, both Luke and Benny are in for a big surprise! The use of accents and skillful characterisations lent this piece an authenticity which is a huge credit to these accomplished young actors.

The Helen O'Grady Drama Academy is the Northern Ireland's largest drama school. Specialist drama teachers undergo an extensive training in the Helen O'Grady teaching methods to ensure that each student is encouraged in a warm, positive learning environment, where mutual respect is a high priority. The award-winning programme aims to develop enthusiasm, confidence, self-esteem, communication skills and social skills, through a highly developed and stimulating drama curriculum.

During the awards ceremony following the performances, Lisa Semple, Executive Principal of the Academy said: "It is wonderful to see the breadth of talent across the different age groups. All our students have shown development in their confidence in verbal communication and their self-esteem which is what our unique programme offers. We are developing valuable life-skills." The Helen O'Grady Drama Academy is currently enrolling for ages 5 - 18 for September. In order to give your children the invaluable opportunities afforded by this tremendous educational programme and for details of your local studio please telephone 028 91464337 or e-mail