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Where your child has been asked to self-isolate, please note that our excellent Parent Liaison Officers, Manuela Sewell and Kelley-Anne Aldsworth, are available to support you in ensuring that your child is able to continue to access their education remotely using their Chromebook computer. They will make early contact with you to introduce themselves and they will be available to answer any of your questions or queries.

An Excellent Year for Dramatic Arts

May 2019

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Year 12 students, Emma, Molly, Faye and Callum performed The History Boys by Alan Bennett.

This year has seen an exciting display of creativity and determination by the Dramatic Arts Department. Students have produced dynamic and electrifying performances and have achieved both academically and personally.

In the first Year 12 Improvisation Performance, the intention was to have the audience decide and alter the narrative for the characters to perform. Control of what happens to the characters was completely in the hands of the audience. This was done via a dialogue within the performance, where the audience were given options to choose from or use one of their own suggestions.

The cast prepared a montage of scenes with the work of artist Russ Mills used to provide atmosphere and context to the action on stage. The staging for the performance was also inspired by the artist as a collosseum-style layout was used.

The main intention for performance two was to educate the audience about how current social issues could escalate in the near future. The cast wanted the audience to think about their own lives and relate to issues such as power, secrets and social status. This was our chosen aim because it would encourage the audience members to realise negative aspects of their own lives and change them for the better.

The cast wanted to express a dystopian world to the audience to show what could happen in the future if society continues to act irresponsibly. Hierarchy was a recurring theme throughout the performance, due to the separation of factions and how society treats people. This was shown through communication between characters, as well as visually with the set. It was timeless but had futuristic elements, adding to the mystery.

The aim of the piece was that the audience would form their own private connections with the characters and subconsciously create their own ideals for the situation.

Year 13 Performing Arts students, Shelley E, Beth B and Josie P experimented in deconstructing the theme and narrative of the musical 'Ghost'. The character of Molly was split into three roles and interpreted as the three female influences on Sam who has died; Mother, Wife and Sister. Songs were also re-worked to reveal dark undertones and themes of grief, loss and sorrow.

The performance was skillfully designed to give the audience a sense of the emotion rather than take them upon a chronological journey. The combination of acting and physical theatre allowed the cast to be creative in the interpretation, allowing dance to flow freely into creative body work, and the desired impact on the audience was one of thought and contemplation.

If the audience were already familiar with the musical, it may have contextualised some of the characters, however if they were new to the genre, it could be interpreted as a stand-alone piece with heartache, anguish and control at the centre of the performance.

Year 12 Drama students Molly B, Callum J, Faye H and Emma H, pictured here, explored and performed 'The History Boys' by Alan Bennett. They performed a creative piece which fused naturalistic theatre with the abstract nature of theatre practitioner, Boal. They were also put under immense personal pressure to perform a 2-3 minute monologue, which they completed with flair.

This year saw some outstanding Year 11 performances from an extremely talented year group. Students were particularly dedicated and showed a real passion on stage. They were diligent and sensitive in their performances of John Godber's 'Shakers', 'Bouncers' and 'Teechers', and this year we experimented with an innovative text called 'Blackout' by Davey Anderson.

Students showed real grit and put in a lot of extracurricular rehearsal, which will hopefully lead to some very high grades in August.