What makes us SHINE!


What makes Sunshine College so special? What makes us stand out from any other school in the district? What makes us shine?

Is it the diverse and broad range of students that attend our school?

Is it the fact that you could find up to 20 different nationalities sitting in the one classroom?

Is it that students who attend our school have many different abilities, skills and talents?

Is it that we are able to accommodate those different abilities (and disabilities) as well?



Is it all of these things that are able to be combined and displayed in one spectacular production? A production held once a year that’s jam packed with exciting performances by Sunshine College students. A production we like to call: SHINE!

Ding, ding, ding! I think we have a winner.

Ah yes, SHINE! It puts a smile on my face just thinking about it. Every year students from all four campuses submit a range of acts that are enough to knock anyone’s socks off. Sometimes students will submit their own creations. But for most of the year, music classes are preparing ensemble performances and the bands of each campus are also preparing for the big night.


SHINE delivers the very finest talent that this school has to offer, and it perfectly embodies everything that Sunshine College is and stands for.

So many different cultures and nationalities are shown through traditional dances and songs sung in native tongues. Plus, some of those costumes would make your jaw drop.

Bollywood and Sri-Lankan dances were among my favourite acts. Next to the widely popular and beloved islander dances (which have become some-what of a signature act of SHINE). They never cease to impress us. Their pride in their culture is formidable!



And if it anyone knew how to combine cultural dance with a splash of the modern mixtape, it’s definitely these kids.

The passion displayed through these performances is absolutely UN-REAL. The excitement echoes through the hall, the screams are deafening, but you can’t help but cheer until your throat hurts.


It’s not just culture that is displayed on this stage. All different types of abilities are also showcased. Students at every year level have the opportunity to share their talents with the wider Sunshine College community.

Bands performed from the Senior, West, Ardeer and North campuses which displayed some of our most talented musicians and vocalists. We have some bloody big voices and those musicians absolutely take it home.

Even among ensemble performances like the choirs of North campus and West campus, or the African drummers, you will often find a few stand-out performers who really give it their all and make everyone cheer even louder.


I absolutely love the fact that even the students who are not normally stars or who don’t normally stand-out, do get to be stars on this special night. Students from the deaf facilities, or lighthouse program (a program designed to assist students with a disability) have a chance to be a part of ensemble performances or have a performance of their own.

The most touching act of the night was the very first one. Students of the deaf facility did a performance to the song “This is me” (from the Greatest Showman), entirely in sign language. It was so beautiful and brought tears to many people’s eyes.


With every new generation of students, there is always new talent and performances to look forward to. These are just some of the many spectacular performances we witnessed last Wednesday night.

On top of great talent, the show was complete with amazing lighting and sound production fit for the ‘real-thing’. Sunshine College really knows how to put on a show.

Cameras were clicking away (including my own). The crowd’s clapping and cheering filled the Senior campus hall. It was an epically unforgettable night.


So, ask me again, what makes Sunshine College so special?

Buy a ticket to next year’s show, I promise you won’t be disappointed!

Maybe by then the government will get up off its butt and give us the funding needed to finish construction of buildings such as the drama block at the west campus.

SHINE is one of the school’s greatest assets and yet its potential to grow and become bigger and better than the last year is what is at stake if students are not given the facilities and resources needed to make it work.

Why would anyone want to risk that part of Sunshine colleges’ history and future?

Claudia Forsberg is a Melbourne based writer and journalist. She is currently working as a Regional Trainee with ABC Ballarat.



  1. - No, it’s not over! – Students, Parents and Friends of Sunshine College meeting - - […] have a decent music room to practice in. These are the kids of our spectacular school production; SHINE, and…

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