A-Level Drama and Theatre Studies
How has Theatre adapted throughout the ages? Who has been the greatest influence on modern theatre? How can Theatre bring about change?
All these questions are addressed in the Drama and Theatre Studies A Level. This course enables students to broaden their understanding of the theoretical side of theatre, whist also honing a full range of performance skills.
‘All the world's a stage, And all the men and women merely players’ - William Shakespeare
Automatic entry onto Level 3 courses includes students achieving 5 x A*-C or equivalent at GCSE alongside a grade 5 or above in both English and Mathematics. Students with either English and/or Mathematics at grade 4 or below will have individual meetings to determine the most suitable pathway within sixth form.
Students will develop the key skills needed for performance:
- Identification with character
- Use of voice, speech and sound
- Movement and gesture – use of body and space and physical relationships
- Listening and responding – interacting with others
- Power to engage and hold an audience and understanding of practitioners
These skills will be showcased in a devised piece and performance from a text based around a key play.
Further to this students, will have the opportunity to study texts in relation to the following:
- Interpreting roles on stage
- Discussing atmosphere and staging potential
- Reflecting on the way the play was originally performing
Exam board website
Link to past papers
20% - Component 1 Practical
- A group performance from a text studied in relation to a practitioner or theatre company.
- A creative log which demonstrates research, creation and development of ideas.
40% - Component 2 Practical
Externally assessed by visiting examiner
- Devised piece based on theatre practitioner or company, in relation to stimulus given
- Text piece in different style, in relation to stimulus given
- Process and evaluation report
40% Component 3 Written Exam
- Section A – Set Text – Staging questions based on one or two extracts from the text.
- Section B – Set Text – Essay response, focusing on how the text could be interpreted for a contemporary audience, with analysis and evaluation of a live theatre production influencing creative decisions
- Section C – Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time – Question on pre-released section of the play, analysing and evaluating how the text could be performed
Recommended Resources and Wider Reading
- As You Like It by Shakespeare
- Racing Demon by David Hare
- The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time (Play script) by Mark Haddon
- Blithe Spirit by Noel Coward
- The Crucible by Arthur Miller
- Meditations on Metamorphosis by Stephen Berkoff
- Brecht on Theatre by Bertolt Brecht
- An Actor Prepares by Constantin Stanislavski
- Shakespeare's Comedies: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short Introductions) by Bart Van Es
Students who study Drama typically can go onto the following:
- University: Many Drama and Theatre Studies students gain places at prestigious universities to study both practical and theoretical subjects.
- Industry: Students have gone on to work for a range of leading industries in theatre, film and TV. Further Careers in Drama and Theatre Studies can include: journalism, production and publishing.
Ways to help my child succeed
Ensure your child accesses all the theatre trips organised by the Drama department throughout the year. Discuss theatre and provide opportunities to widen your child’s experience of different productions. Finally, ensure your son or daughter takes every opportunity to become involved in productions in and outside of school.