A very special guest joins Mamma Mia! night in The Leaf

One Thursday night in March, Year 12 Hospitality students transformed The Leaf into a sparkling Greek taverna to host a 'Mamma Mia!' night. The sell-out event, conceived, planned and organised entirely by the students was part of their practical assessment for a Level 3 BTEC in Hospitality.

Guests were welcomed with a complimentary drink of 'Blue Bubbles' designed especially for the event by Bar Manager for the night, Elise Wear. They then sat down to enjoy a taste of authentic Greek cuisine, with dishes such as salt and pepper calamari, beef stifado, souvlaki pork and homemade Baklava with Greek yogurt ice cream. The menu was prepared and cooked by the Year 12 students help on the night from Year 10 Hospitality students, Audrey Sweet, Chantelle Hawkes and Louisa Jones.

As ABBA and traditional Greek music played in the background guests tried their luck a special ‘Mamma Mia!’ quiz to see how well they knew the movie. However one table had a very special guest that gave them a clear advantage! Local playwright Catherine Johnson, who wrote the screenplay for 'Mamma Mia!' and co-wrote sequel’ ‘Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again’, was the evening’s guest of honour.

Catherine mentioned she had recently been a similar event in Sweden hosted by Benny from ABBA (no less) and The Leaf night was every bit as good, at a fraction of the price. She congratulated the students on a fine effort and chatted to guests and posed for photos.

It was an incredibly successful evening taking over £1,500, so congratulations to Event Manager, Leon Farr and his team; Lauren Gigg, Abbie Clarke, Elle Wescott, Fran Jefferies, Lily Mansfield, Elise Wear and Issy Johnson.

Special praise must go to Annie Hitchings,head chef for the evening, who following a chance conversation with a friend who had worked on Catherine Johnsons' house, decided to make contact and invite Catherine along. Needless to say, she and her teammates were delighted when this invitation was accepted.

The whole evening typified the St Katherine's values of Respect, Responsibility and Resilience. I could not be more proud of my students.

Mr Mingo-West, Hospitality and Catering subject manager