The fundamental aim of the Drama Department is to improve through physical and vocal exercises, and challenging projects, the communication skills of all students. To this end the department will:
- Encourage students to use their own observations and experiences in the creation of practical work
- Encourage an awareness of the capabilities of each student's own voice and physicality, and how these can be improved to help better communication
- Promote co-operation within groups
- Develop an awareness of how human beings effectively communicate
Further to this, and with the use of theatre games and acting exercises, the department aims to:
- Develop a love of Theatre and Drama in general
- Encourage an awareness of the importance of Drama and Theatre in past and modern societies
- Encourage effective partnerships and group work
- To extend and develop specific chosen skills and to provide opportunities for students to study any practical theatre skill they wish to
There is also an emphasis on extra-curricular work. Every week there is a Drama Club. Each year there is a Year 7 production, the Junior Production and the Senior Production, and occasionally there are Sixth Form productions. The school works closely with City of London School and boys are invited to take part in many of the shows here while girls are invited to take part in shows at CLS. Every other year the Senior Production is a major musical. All in all, if you include examination productions there are around 20 per year.
Productions are often innovative, and we have been proud to present several specially commissioned world-premieres, and have been lucky to attract the contributions of West End practitioners including a set design by top designer, John Napier.
WHY IS DRAMA EXCITING AT CLSG?
Drama lessons are vibrant, energetic, exciting, unpredicatable and always take place within an atmosphere of fun. To the non-initiated they appear to be noisy and out of control, but this is part and parcel of the dynamic creative process. In short, they are like no other lessons seen in school!
Also examination results are something to be proud of with nearly all girls attaining A and A* grades, and often for A-level practical work, girls achieve full marks!
Students are encouraged to use their own observations in the creation of work. Skills taught and projects covered are many and varied, from voice-work to mime, from improvisations to scripted work, from theatre history to modern practice. Students are also able to study more specific skills in detail, including technical and design elements.
AQA GCSE Drama
Students select a skill or skills which they wish to specialise in. Then they perform and design productions of scripted and devised work. The practical element is 60% of the course with a 40% written element. There are frequent visits to innovative professional theatre productions, and practitioners are invited into school for lectures, talks and workshops.
AQA Drama and Theatre Studies
The practical work in this two year course covers both scripted and devised work with students opting to be examined as a performer or designer. Students also study set texts and theatre practitioners.
RECENT TRIPS/LEARNING ACTIVITIES
- GCSE & A-level Drama - Backstage in Biscuit Land at the Barbican Theatre
- GCSE Drama - The Father at the Tricycle Theatre
- Year 5 & 6 and Sixth Form - Electra at the Old Vic Theatre
- GCSE Drama - The Woman in Black at the Fotrune Theatre
- Prep - Young Shakespeare Company visit & performance of Hamlet
- GCSE Drama - Happy Days at the Young Vic Theatre
- Sixth Form Theatre Studies - Antigone at Stratford East Theatre
- Drama students - Grimms Tales at the OXO Tower
- GCSE & A-level Drama - Behind the Beautiful Forevers at the National Theatre
- GCSE & A-level Drama - Treasure Island at the National Theatre
- GCSE Drama - The Play That Goes Wrong at the Duchess Theatre
On average examination students visit professional shows around a dozen times a year. The department's aim is to make use of the great variety of shows which are on offer in London. Writing about shows is a necessity for GCSE and A-level Drama and Theatre Studies but theatre visits are used also to enhance the students' appreciation of theatre, to expand their experience of it and consequently to affect their own work. Therefore, while we will occasionally visit more mainstream productions such as musicals and classics, the department actively seeks out those production which will stretch the students knowledge and experience, visiting experimental theatre companies, circus, dance, site-specific theatre, etc. We live in what is arguably the theatre capital of the world, we have the wonderful Barbican Theatre on our doorstep with its emphasis on bringing in theatre from around the world, and we aim to take advantage.
"Drama is so valuable because it not only great fun, but enhances your confidence, your communication skills and your self-awareness. Also, the amazing variety of productions we visit is fantastic! I have absolutely loved studying GCSE Drama and cannot wait to begin A-level Theatre Studies." Ophelia
Head of Department
Mr S Morley