Drama is taught in mixed ability groups in years 7, 8 and 9. The subject is popular with pupils at all levels of ability and pupils receive 3 lessons per fortnight.
The school produce a whole school musical on an annual basis. Recent productions have included The Lion King, Billy Elliot, Fame, Our House.
Theatre trips and visits and workshops form a regular feature of the drama programme of study. Recent theatre visits have included trips to London to see The Woman In Black, Charlie and The Chocolate Factory where pupils have been fortunate to participate in workshops with cast members at Pineapple Dance Studios and West End Theatres. The department has enjoyed hosting workshops with The National Youth Theatre of Wales in school, along with regular visits to Royal Welsh College Of Music & Drama and pupils have gained a great deal of experience from participation within these events.
Drama focuses on a huge range of skill, strategies and techniques in all aspects of group or individual work. All pupils are taught drama in years7, 8 and 9 and they may opt for GCSE Drama and or Performing Arts. Most of the lessons are taught in the fully equipped Drama room and there are regular opportunities to work or perform in the hall. There are also regular theatre trips and workshops for all year groups
In year 7 it is assumed that the pupils are starting from scratch and the focus is on developing a holistic understanding of drama rather than just seeing drama as a means of preparing for performance. The work generally focuses on non- verbal communication, improvisation, building to the Theatre History topic of Melodrama and Greek Drama where they perform using masks.
Year 8 develops on these skills with the introduction of Script work – analysing a script, performing script and writing their own stage plays. Pupils focus on how to develop characters individually and in groups. They study Medieval Drama as part of their Theatre History in Year 8.
Drama in year 9 is very much focussed on themed work. A range of stimuli is regularly offered from photographs, music, newspaper articles and poems. The pupils are expected to work in small groups and create interesting and innovative drama for a target audience. The application of existing skills is enhanced by teaching new more complex techniques and concentrating on the quality of the work rather than quantity. The aims are to develop ensemble work and acting skills through a range of strategies and techniques.
Key Stage 4
TASK One Devised Performance
Candidates will devise a practical performance based on a theme, linked with a practitioner or genre. Candidates may choose either acting or a theatre design skill;
TASK TWO Devised Performance Report
Candidates will complete a written report of the practical work they completed in Task One, under formal supervision.
The report should include details of live performances candidates have seen, that have influenced their practical work; details on decision making, the inclusion of technical elements and the content of the piece and an evaluation of their own work and that of the group.
UNIT TWO Performance from a Text
Candidates will be assessed on either their acting or a theatre design skill, in a scene from a published play. Candidates to work in groups of between 2 to 5.
UNIT THREE Written Examination
Candidates will sit a written examination. They will be assessed on their ability to analyse one set text as an actor, designer and director.
Externally assessed in June.
Performing Arts GCSE
This is a totally different course to Drama. It focuses on candidates individual skills such as singing, dance, acting, makeup/ costume artist, technical skills. The course develops their individual performance skills along with researching jobs in the Performing Arts Industry.
UNIT ONE – Individual Skill
Candidates select their individual skill and perform individually or in a group. They will complete a personal log showing progression and analysis.
UNIT TWO – Showcase
This project allows students to develop 2 further skills which they will develop as a devised Performance. They will develop their ideas on a set theme and complete a written exam linked to their performance.