Garin rises to the challenge

For Holly Tippler, 17, last night was the Stage Challenge victory she has waited for ever since she started at Garin College five years ago.

The school took out first place in the 20th year of the competiton at Nelson's Trafalgar Centre last night, with a performance exploring the trappings of wealth and how money changed people.

Ms Tippler was a senior leader for the competition, her fifth, and was one of a handful of the Garin students on-stage to receive the first place prize.

She said she felt amazing to lead her school to what she believed to be its first win at the competition.
"I have been waiting for this moment since I was year 9.

"I will never forget tonight," she said.

Spectators applauded as hundreds of students gave it their all on the stage in their quest to take home the title.

Garin College, Nelson College and Nelson College for Girls and Golden Bay High School all battled it out in the open category, while Marlborough's Bohally Intermediate competed in the Raw category, which does not require set design and focuses on performance.

Nelson College and Nelson College for Girls joined forces to give a performance urging the crowd to "dare to be different", with aliens teaching a conformist society how to become individuals.

Golden Bay High School's performance was titled "Induced Revolution: Our Decisions Shape the Future", and drew on the recent Occupy protests and overpopulation to tell the audience that the time had come to make the right choices.

In the J Rock category, Takaka Primary School gave a performance telling the story of Maui and Mahuika, the Goddess of Fire, while St Joseph's School's act paid tribute to the heroes created as a result of last year's Canterbury earthquake.

Last night saw fewer schools compete than in recent years, and there were no awards for second or third place given out.