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Top Acts

What is Top Acts?

Top Acts is an evening concert which presents up to 20 performers from the Top Class concert series in one stunning event. Works of dance, drama, theatre studies and music are blended together into a dynamic presentation.

Top Acts 2020 will take place at the Melbourne Recital Centre on Friday 8 May 2020.


Selection process

Top Acts is curated by an artistic director who carefully selects works from across the 12 Top Class concerts. Selection is based on a number of criteria, including curatorial concerns, balance and diversity, and an outstanding Top Class performance standard.

For VCE Drama, Theatre Studies, Dance and VCE VET Dance, students are invited to audition for Top Class based on their performance examination. Invitations to audition will be sent out by post in mid-December after VCE results are released.

VCE Music Performance, Music Investigation, Music Style and Composition and VCE VET Music Industry performers are selected by panels who listen to the examination performance recording of students that received a high A+ in their performance examination. For music subjects, invitations to perform in Top Class Sound and Top Class Music are sent out by post in mid-December to selected students.

Top Class performers who have been selected for Top Acts are informed by email, after all Top Class concerts have concluded.

Top Acts 2020 will take place at the Melbourne Recital Centre on Friday 8 May 2020.

Venue information

Top Acts is held at the Melbourne Recital Centre, Southbank.

Public transport near the Melbourne Recital Centre

The Melbourne Recital Centre is located on the corner of Southbank Boulevard and Sturt Street in Southbank in the heart of Melbourne's Arts precinct.

Flinders St Railway Station

Flinders St Railway Station is approximately a 10 minute walk from the Melbourne Recital Centre.

Swanston St/St Kilda Rd trams

The nearest tram stop is Stop 17 on the number 1 tram, located directly in front of the Centre on the corner of Sturt St and Southbank Boulevard.

Alternatively you can alight at Stop 16, in front of the National Gallery of Victoria. Melbourne Recital Centre is a short walk down Southbank Boulevard (approximately 200 metres). This stop is serviced by routes 1, 3, 5, 6, 8, 16, 64, 67, 72.

Bus

Melbourne Bus Link operates three routes along Southbank Boulevard: Route 216, 219 and 220.

The Melbourne City Tourist Shuttle runs in a loop through Melbourne’s CBD every 15 minutes, and stops at the corner of Southbank Blvd and Kavanagh Street (Stop 10). An all-day ticket for the Shuttle costs $5 and children under 10 years can travel free.


Accessibility

Mobility impairments

Wheelchair Icon 

The Melbourne Recital Centre has wheelchair access.



Vision impairments

Large print icon 

Large Print PDF versions of the Top Class programs will be available once the program is finalised, usually approximately one week before each concert. These can be enlarged to suit your visibility requirements. Please print out a copy before you attend the concert. Also you can choose the Read Aloud software option to convert the text into spoken word, to hear a description of the concert before you attend. Please email seasonofexcellence@edumail.vic.gov.au to request the program.

When booking tickets through the Melbourne Recital box office you can request seats for good visibility at the concert hall. Guide dogs and other registered assistance dogs are welcome at the MRC.


Hearing impairments

Listening Icon 

The Melbourne Recital Centre theatres are fitted with assistance hearing devices. When booking tickets through the Melbourne Recital box office you can request seats for good visibility at the concert hall if you need to lip read. All performances and talks are amplified.

For further detailed information about venue accessibility at the Melbourne Recital Centre visit the Melbourne Recital Centre Access webpage.


Educational resources

Top Acts: Focus On... documentaries

Top Acts: Focus On… documentaries explore the artistic development and processes of former VCE performing arts students selected for Top Acts. The short films are produced by a Top Screen filmmaker and include footage of student performances, as well as interviews with the performers, their teachers, VCAA staff and the Top Acts artistic director.

Each year, Top Screen filmmakers are invited to apply to for this valuable paid professional development opportunity, where they are required to respond to a professional brief. The results are always impressive and provide incredible insight into the drive, talent and hard work of VCE performing arts students.


Top Acts: Focus On… Music (2018)

TheTop Acts: Focus On... Music series below was directed and produced by Top Screen 2018 filmmaker Jenna Tang. The series explores music composition in VCE, following the journey and performances of three former VCE music students.

Ceridwen McCooey, Top Acts 2018
Victorian College of the Arts Secondary School
VCE Music Style and Composition
Nothing to do with Calypso by Ceridwen McCooey

Duration: 8 minutes 59 seconds

Ceridwen McCooey, Top Acts 2018 transcript (docx - 26.9kb)

Louise Gaul, Top Acts 2018
Heathdale Christian College
VCE VET Music Industry
Still by Louise Gaul

Duration: 9 minutes 47 seconds

Louise Gaul, Top Acts 2018 transcript (docx - 27.88kb)

Rama Williams and Amy Wells, Top Acts 2018
Geelong High School
VCE Music Performance
Traffic by Rama Williams and Amy Wells

Duration: 10 minutes 16 seconds

Rama Williams and Amy Wells, Top Acts 2018 transcript (docx - 28.8kb)



Top Acts: Focus On… Theatre Studies (2017)

The Top Acts: Focus On… Theatre Studies series was produced by Top Screen 2017 filmmakers Tom Hughes, Neha Shenvi and Shanon McKenzie as part of the VCE Season of Excellence 2017.

Broderick McDonald, Top Acts 2017
Swinburne Senior Secondary College
Horrocks from Children of the Black Skirt
By Angela Betzien

Candice Farrugia-Roberts, Top Acts 2017
Mount Lilydale Mercy College
Sylvia from Sylvia
By A. R. Gurney

Duration: 10 minutes 27 seconds

Flynn Smeaton, Top Acts 2017
St Michael's Grammar School
Titania from A Midsummer Night's Dream
By William Shakespeare    
 

Duration: 10 minutes 28 seconds


Top Acts: Focus On… Drama (2016)

The Top Acts: Focus on … Drama series was produced by Top Screen 2016 filmmaker Bridget Webster as part of the VCE Season of Excellence 2016.

James Crozier, Top Acts 2016
St Michael’s Grammar School
The Panto-Dame

Duration: 14 minutes 40 seconds

Connor O'Neill, Top Acts 2016
Mazenod College
The Detective

 Duration: 13 minutes 12 seconds

Sunny Youngsmith, Top Acts 2016
Melbourne Girls’ College
Tally Youngblood 

Duration: 13 minutes 8 seconds


Top Acts: Focus On… Music (2014)

Top Acts: Focus On… Music looks at James Beagley’s original composition that was selected for Top Acts 2014 after his performance in Top Class Sound. The film includes tips and insights for VCE Music Style and Composition teachers and students from the VCAA Performing Arts Curriculum Manager and was made by Top Screen 2014 filmmaker Riley Muscat.

James Beagley, Top Acts 2014
VCE Music Style and Composition
Bendigo Senior Secondary College
Song for a Cat

Duration: 9 minutes 17 seconds


Top Acts: Focus On… Dance (2015)

Top Acts: Focus On… Dance is a series of three films that follow the dancers selected for Top Acts 2015. The films include tips and ideas for VCE Dance and VCE VET Dance teachers and students, interviews with the VCAA Performing Arts Curriculum Manager, and Dance and VCE VET Dance Chief Assessors.

This wonderful resource made by Top Screen 2015 filmmaker Anna Diacos is available as a free DVD for Victorian schools that offer these subjects. Email Student Events to request your copy (one per school): seasonofexcellence@edumail.vic.gov.au

Louise Brooker, Top Acts 2015
VCE Dance – Technique
Distance Education Centre Victoria
Technique Solo

Sarah Kassing, Top Acts 2015
VCE VET Dance
Eltham High School/ Bev Palmer Performing Arts
Jazz – Le Jazz Hot

Ryland Lack-Powell, Top Acts 2015
VCE Dance - Composition
Beaconhills College
Composition Solo – Brothers in Arms