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Iconic musical too ‘sexist’ for schools

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Two Perth schools have cancelled their co-production of the musical Grease because the movie’s themes and content are outdated.

Year 7-10 students from Scotch College and Presbyterian Ladies‘ College were due to perform the iconic musical this month but decided against it.

The young women from Presbyterian Ladies’ College believed the play inappropriate for modern times felt the musical was sexist, offensive and anti-feminist, according to Sunrise.

Scotch College agreed that a different production would be better suited, but it has not yet announced what the musical will be replaced with.

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PLC Principal Cate Begbie and Acting Scotch College Headmaster Mr Peter Burt issued a brief joint statement about the decision.

“A number of PLC students raised concerns whether the musical was appropriate in modern times,” it read.

“Scotch College listened respectfully to the girls’ concerns and both schools agreed a different musical would be better suited for their joint production in 2022.”

The 1978 movie starred Australia’s Olivia Newton-John and John Travolta and was based on the 1971 musical by Jim Jacobs and Warren Casey.

It tells the story of good girl Sandy Olsson and Danny Zuko who fall in love over the summer holidays and unexpectedly find they are going to the same high school.

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During the movie, Sandy embarks on a mission to become increasingly sexier and daring to win over her summertime fling.

The classic movie was aired in the UK earlier this year but it sparked mass backlash on Twitter, with many viewers saying the film did not age well.

Some critics called it “misogynistic”, “rapey” and encouraged “slut-shaming”.

It’s been widely reported that Newton-John defended the movie, hitting back at claims it was sexist.

“I know there were some criticisms about me wanting to change to be like him, but they forget that he wanted to change to be what I wanted,” she said last year.

“It’s a movie and it’s a fun story and I have never taken that too seriously.”

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