The Drama department is a dynamic and lively environment in which girls develop an enduring passion for, and enjoyment of, the subject. Taught by experienced and inspiring subject specialists with backgrounds in performance, direction and the study of theatre as an academic discipline, girls are exposed to wide range of theatrical styles, genres, periods and practitioners. As well as exploring the subject as an art form in its own right, Drama and Theatre Studies students develop their creativity, self-discipline, independence, teamwork, presentation and confidence. The department aims to develop not only a student’s practical skills but also their appreciation of the social, cultural, historical and political context of theatre.
In the lower school (Upper III – Upper IV), girls study a rich variety of topics, including modules in silent movies, radio plays, Greek Theatre, African storytelling, the traditional Italian comedy form of Commedia dell’arte, innovative non-naturalistic theatrical forms and the practical study of text (both contemporary and classical, including Shakespeare).
In Lower V and Upper V, students follow the WJEC Drama specification and in the sixth form we offer Edexcel’s A Level Drama and Theatre Studies and IB Theatre.These examination courses require students to create their own pieces of theatre from a stimulus; perform the works of established playwrights; explore a range of theatrical practitioners and analyse and evaluate their own process and performance. They also complete a written examination at the end of each course, testing their knowledge and understanding of a set text. We run at least three theatre trips each year for each examination group and external practitioners deliver workshops in areas as diverse as devising, scriptwork and theatrical make-up.
Results have been consistently strong at both GCSE and A Level and many students have gone on to study Theatre Studies and Acting at some of the country’s leading universities and drama schools. Drama is a respected and challenging subject and is viewed favourably by Russell Group universities.