Bring tissues they said. What? For a school play? But this was no ordinary production.
This was The Raft; a devised performance by The Queen's School tackling the timely and complex subject of the refugee/migrant crisis.
Through a number of personal stories, the girls examined various reasons people decide to leave or flee their home countries, taking perilous journeys in the hope of a better, safer life.
We met Emmanuel, the young man compelled to leave Nigeria to seek work in the UK to support his family back home. Amira from Syria who fled with her children to seek a safer life in Germany away from the repressive and violent culture implemented by ISIS.
We witnessed the harrowing sea crossings, the pain, the fear, the tears. We saw death; the floating jacket in the sea, the owner of which 'is no longer with us'.
A mirror was then turned on the audience. How are these desperate refugees and migrants received? Again the girls showed us.
There were the heartless holidaymakers, furious that their expensive breaks had been 'ruined'. Mediterranean islanders torn between fearing the impact of migration and yet wanting to help the desperate.
In the UK we saw the well meaning but useless, the polite but nervous, the downright unpleasant but also the kind helping hand.
The audience was impelled to ask itself; had we lost our way? Had the sheer numbers reduced a million desperate stories into a cold statistic? Had we lost our humanity towards fellow human beings?
The tears and tissues in the audience suggested that to some extent we possibly had.
By bringing those characters to life, the girls showed us that each and every person in a desperate situation is a valuable life begging for the chance of a new start.
By the end of the show, many of the girls were still visibly upset and yet exalted by their performance and the impact it had upon their audience; they hadn't acted, they had become the characters they portrayed and this generated the power.
That is rare at any level, for 11-18 year old schoolgirls it is quite extraordinary.