The Performing Arts Department
Our Performance Faculty allows students to explore dance and drama at key stage three and for students’ opted BTEC studies. With creativity and expression at our core, as well as studying a plethora of performance styles in a fun and engaging curriculum, we also provide opportunities for students to experience live performances and for them to perform themselves, developing their confidence and interpersonal skills; transferable skills which are crucial for the world beyond their school careers. In addition, we are proud to provide a wide range of extra-curricular experiences, such as dance and drama clubs, and a production team.
Teaching and Learning
At key stage three, pupils alternate between dance and drama classes each half-term. During their lessons, they will go through cycles of responding to stimui and exploring ideas, rehearsing, and performing, before re-creating in response to peer feedback, and thus the cycle continues. Therefore, creativity, group collaboration, and the ability to give and receive constructive critical feedback are the transferable skills that are quintessential to progress in performing arts.
In year seven, pupils learn about different performance styles throughout history and across different cultures through practical exploration in small groups. By year eight, students study the ideologies of prominent dance and drama practitioners. They then use this knowledge and skillset more independently to creatively inform their own choreographies and devised scenes, or to bring text to life.
Likewise, at key stage four, students who have opted to take the level 1/2 BTEC TECH acting or dance course present research findings on the performance repertoire of key practitioners that they have explored. They are expected to plan and manage their own performances for live audiences with maturity and confidence, as well as keeping detailed rehearsal logs to document their progress as a performer.
By key stage five, students who embark on the level 3 BTEC course have developed an extensive proficiency from which to work as young professionals. They are expected to complete ‘academic’ essays, bridging the gap between key stage four and what will be expected of them should they choose to study dance or theatre studies at degree level.
Director of Faculty – Mrs Askey
KS3 Leader – Miss Johnson
Drama and Dance – Miss Cowley
Drama and Dance – Miss Turner
Drama and Dance – Mrs Wagstaff
Lead Practitioner of Music – Mr Lewis
Music – Miss Burke
Supporting Your Child at Home
Together with our choirs and band, our dance club, drama club, and production team host performances throughout the year, including seasonal shows like Scare Fests and Pantomimes, as well as whole-school musicals such as this year’s Annie. We encourage all students to join in, especially those who wish to study BTEC.
Our well-attended dance club offers pupils the chance to work with students from different year groups in a supportive environment where the older pupils boost the younger students’ progress. A great way to keep fit, the choreography is challenging, allowing students to experience the demands of good choreography on the dancer’s body, as well as stimulating the creative understanding of aesthetics for the dancer’s mind.
Our drama club also boasts a fantastic membership of students from all year groups. Again, the sixth-formers often take on directorial roles, developing their leadership skills as they guide the younger students.
Production team brings ‘backstage’ to the forefront, designing promotional materials; making and selling tickets and programs; organising refreshments; making set, costume and props; operating projections and the lighting and sound boards; and assuming stage management roles during performances.
Another way that you can support your child is through being active on ShowMyHomework to keep up-to-date with the written tasks that your child is being set. Performing Arts is not 100% practical, and students are responsible for completing logbooks and research etc. Additionally, running through lines with your child, or having a look through their logbook will help them to feel more prepared.