Year 8 students have been studying drama practition-ers, exploring the views and styles of well-known individuals such as, Konstantin Stanislavski, Bertolt Brecht and Augusto Boal. 

Students were asked to create a written project explaining what they had learnt about Brecht and Stanislavski and how they applied their techniques in lesson. I was very impressed with the knowledge and understanding shown within some of these written projects as well as the high standard of literacy. Some examples in particular were written by: Maddi Sargent, Jazmin Gosling, Jessica Portelli-Jones, Joseph Holmes, Jessica Harrison, Chelsi Morris, Jessica Haywood & Grace Pinner ... to name a few. Many of my students have taken them home to write their second draft based on their feedback in order to increase their mark. I look forward to marking their new and improved creations! Thank you very much year 8. Miss Croucher 

Year 10 Drama 

Year 10 students have been working on a practitioner’s performance project studying Constantin Stanislavski and Bertolt Brecht. After studying key elements of the theories behind the practitioners work they are now moving on to create performances in the practitioners style. 

Brecht is well known for his use of stereotyped characters, 3rd person dialogue and multi-role approach to characters. Using these features, students responded to the major work Caucasian Chalk Circle and devised performances to tell the key episodes of the story. Although the style proved challenging, students created pieces that worked with these elements to create pieces of Brechtian theatre. The next step is to apply this style to a devised piece in response to a stimulus. 

The theories, techniques and strategies will be re-enforced through a workshop on Wednesday 3rd December delivered by Nick O’Brien from the Stanislavski Company. During the workshop further techniques to enhance and develop skills and knowledge will be explored; these will then be used in the devised performance. 

Year 10 Performing Arts 

Year 10 Performing Arts students have hit the ground running by completing a “Taster” mock exam based on the theme “Blood Brothers”. Each group produced unique pieces, incorporating singing, dancing and acting and understood the expectations of professional conduct and development of skills. They demonstrated independence by organising their own rehearsals after school, brought in costume and props and Luke Grint even managed to incorporate fake blood into his scene! The class are currently work-ing on creating a modern version of “Romeo and Juliet” and I have high expectations that they will achieve great results! 

Year 11 Drama 

The group have been preparing for their Unit 1 Devised Performance Exam. The exam consists of 2 parts, a performance and a written report based on the devising process and an evaluation of the final performance. The stimulus set by the exam board was ‘shadows’ and in response to this students have devised a 15 minute performance using the theories and performance style of Anton Artaud. Artaud was chosen for his surreal, obscure and uncomfortable approach to theatre; students found this more challenging and interesting and wanted to deviate away from the naturalistic styles that we had previously studied. 

The results are outstanding; every single student has taken on board the challenge of such a difficult style and applied this to highly engaging, emotive and surreal pieces of Drama. Extra-curricular interventions and rehearsals have been well attended highlighting the dedication, commitment and effort of the students. 

This image shows how the students intend to intimidate the audience and make them feel uncomfortable; a challenging prospect that has involved experimentation and hard work. Feedback from interim performances show that the students are creating the intended atmosphere and audience members are left wondering what will happen next in an atmospheric, terrifying performance. The mock exam will be performed on 26th November at 6.30pn in the drama studio with the actual exam 2 weeks later. 

I wish all students the best of luck, the hard work will pay off!

Year 11 Performing Arts 

After a fantastic start last year, the Year l1 classes continue to impress. They have recently completed a mock practical piece in a Theatre In Education style aimed at Year 6 and the expectations of coming to CCA. Again, their performances were innovative and imaginative with a wealth of performance skills demonstrated. They have just been given their final exam paper and are currently devising ideas ready for their final practical exam at the beginning of March. We wish them lots of luck and hope they continue with their commitment and focus. 

Year 12 and 13 Performing Arts 

The BTEC National Students are currently on the final stages of their first units for the new school year. They have adjusted extremely well to the new assessment guidelines and the pressures of achieving deadlines and working to a tight schedule. They are currently working on an independently devised piece, based on the theme, “Ring O’ Roses”, exploring the history of the Black Plague. They have each produced three very different pieces, using a range of styles of practitioners, from Antoin Artaud to Augusto Boal. The exam piece will be performed on Wednesday 19th November at 6pm in the Drama Studio. 

In Extended Diploma, they are also working on a Theatre in Education unit and are producing a drama piece using the target audience of Year 10 and focusing on the theme, “Exam Stress and how to deal with it.” This will be performed to Year 10’s in January 2015 and will count towards their final grade.