Drama

Drama is taught in one of 2 fully equipped Drama Studios and 1 Dance Studio. The Studio (C11) is a multi-purpose studio space with 250 retractable seats and a cinema sized whiteboard. C10 Studio Theatre can seat 100 people on a raked seating system. This space is curtained and used for more intimate theatre presentations. Our Dance Studio (C8) has a sprung wooden floor, mirrors, bars, curtains, sound system and whiteboard and can be used for dance and physical theatre performances, as it is set up for stage lighting and the seating is flexible enough to be turned around to face the Dance studio from C10.

The Drama department is well resourced with lighting and sound equipment, costumes, masks and properties. Performances are filmed and photographed and there is scope for projection and the use of special effects.

Staff

Ms. Alison Dures: Head of Drama Department, Arts Award Adviser and co-ordinator.

BA Joint Hons. Drama and English with Dance-University of Wales, PGCE Drama and English- Bretton Hall- University of Leeds.

I worked in professional theatre and Dance in the Midlands and South Wales before moving to
Cornwall. My first job was at Brannel School- as Head of Drama, then became Head of Expressive Arts (Art, Dance, Drama and Music).

I was one of the founders of Cornwall Youth Dance Company and am an associate Director of Cornwall Youth Theatre Company. In 1990-1992, I was the Advisory Teacher for Drama for Cornwall, working with all ages from nursery children up to sixth form, as well as running courses for teachers. I remain on the Advisory panel of Secondary teachers for Cornwall. I worked for Creative Partnerships, part-time in 2005, setting up the Arts Award Pilot with 20 schools in Cornwall. I started at Bodmin College in 1998, setting up the Dance department (GCSE and A Level )and took over Head of Drama and Dance department from the Rogersons in 2002.

My interests: Physical Theatre and Movement, Directing Text and Shakespeare. Passionate about new writing, putting on events and innovative theatre (VTOL, Frantic Assembly, Complicite’, Gecko as well as Kneehigh and Wildworks) and I love networking! The most important thing for me in this job is nurturing our ‘Drama Family’ ie. every student who discovers themselves through drama and theatre.

Ms Sarah Prior: Second in Department.

I have been teaching here at Bodmin College since 2003. I studied Theatre and Media Drama at Glamorgan University (now the University of the South of Wales), specializing in acting and then went on to complete a PGCE at Dartington College.

I enjoy all theatre styles, but especially physical and landscape theatre. My favourite theatre companies are Kneehigh, Wildworks and Frantic Assembly. I have performed all over the Westcountry in a Murder Mystery company and I sing in a choir and enjoy playing the guitar in my spare time. I feel very fortunate that I am in a job where I get to see amazing shows, continue learning and share these experiences with wonderfully creative students.

Ms. Deirdre Dillon

I started at Bodmin College in Sept 2004 after studying a PGCE in Performing Arts at Dartington. Prior to moving to the UK from Ireland in 2003 I completed an MA in Drama and Theatre Studies at NUIG Galway Ireland, a BA in Humanities at GMIT Galway and a Diploma in Cultural studies with Film at DKIT Dundalk.

I am a fluent Irish speaker and used to work and act in an Irish speaking Theatre called An Taibhdhearc, Galway. I worked for the Irish language TV channel TG4 doing voice overs for cartoons and acting as an extra in a soap opera called Ros na Run.
My hobbies include running, singing and Irish dancing. I love teaching our wonderful and talented students at Bodmin College.

Mr. Andrew Wright: Technical Demonstrator for Music, Dance & Drama.

I commenced work here at Bodmin in the summer of 2016, after studying Theatre Production & Technology at Bath Spa University, specialising in Lighting Design, Live Sound Engineering & Set Construction. Prior to working at Bodmin, I worked at West Herts College, London for 3 years, teaching on the Level 3 Extended Diploma Technical Theatre course, which I now teach at Bodmin to Year 12 and 13 students. I obtained my City & Guilds Level 5 teaching status from West Herts before relocating to Cornwall. I have worked in venues such as Earls Court, Theatre Royal Bath, 02 Arena Bristol, Gordon Craig Theatre and many more, assisting in the various technical aspects that happen within productions and I am excited to guide enthusiastic students at Bodmin towards similar career paths.

My interests include football, music, motoring, gaming and design renovation.

KS3

Overview

Drama at KS3 is taught for 100 minutes, once a fortnight, in years 7 and 8. Extended Learning is set twice each semester, in drama journals. The homework always links with the class work, and is then marked with formative comments. Each semester, there is a controlled practical assessment which is marked to criteria and marks and comments are recorded on the assessment grids at the back of their books. At the end of KS3, students will have achieved 6 assessments and will have reviewd the work of others as well as
self –evaluated their skills development.

Extra- curricular opportunities are offered with Shine Club after school on Mondays, with the opportunity to take Bronze and Silver Arts Awards and Rising Stars Drama Club for Year 7 and 8 on Monday lunch times.
Opportunities to perform to the publlc and to friends and families are termly: Fright Night in October, Winter Warmer in December and Summer Sizzler in July with Spring Showcase opportunities in March.
We offer Theatre trips where appropriate, for example, ‘The Tin Drum’ at Hall for Cornwall with Kneehigh Theatre in November and Rogue Theatre in the Woods in October as well as the opportunity to take part in the RSC Associate schools Shakespeare Festival in June with workshops scattered through the year. This year, the whole school will be taking part in Erasmus, a joint project with the Languages and Humanities Departments together with European school partners.

Opportunities are available to audition for the Whole School Musical-previous years have been involved in ‘Aladdin’ and ‘The Lion King’ as well as ‘High School Musical’.

Year 7

Foundation skills in Year 7 are based on ensemble work, whereby the class is encouraged to work together in groups and in whole class in- role activities and exercises. Students are introduced to key vocabulary and drama strategies and conventions such as hot-seating, Teacher in Role, Role on the wall and tableaux and to genres such as Melodrama, Slapstick, Physical theatre, Mime and stage combat.

Improvisation and Storytelling are used as a means to problem solve and see the world from different perspectives. We aim to encourage empathy and tolerance and through characterization explore different viewpoints in a variety of situations.

Year 8

In the Autumn term, students consolidate skills from year 7 and develop their improvisation and devising skills. We link with the English department in the thematic teaching of Gothic Horror and the power of storytelling by creating dramatic tension and atmosphere. We use stage lighting and props, Teacher in Role techniques and group devising techniques using drama strategies and conventions such as cross cutting, role on the wall, monologue, direct address, thought-tracking and debate. In the Spring Term, Improvisation techniques are developed further with skills taught in both Spontaneous and Prepared and polished improvisation, using a variety of different stimuli and starting points, including current news stories, issues linked to PHSE education and Ethics. Characterisation is explored further, with work on motivation and actor objectives, in both scripted and devised work. We work together to make meaning in drama, for example, with the use of props as having symbolic importance in a scene as well as the semiotics of people and objects on stage. Each year we frame this work within a theme based on our college Musical for example, The Lion King or Aladdin, where we explored themes such as pride, parenthood and responsibility, truth and lies, appearance and reality and so on.

The Summer term sees more developed Script work, for example, Shakespeare’s ‘The Tempest’ in which key characters and scenes are explored dramatically, using soundscapes, movement, props and masks and the use of choral speaking and interpolated questioning techniques. Lights and sound are encouraged in final performance pieces which are assessed and recorded in the students’ drama journals as well as within drama department records.

KS4

Overview

At KS4, we presently offer BTEC level 2 Performing Arts Levels 1 and 2 in Acting and Production and this year, we have introduced AQA GCSE in Drama. At KS4, students keep an ongoing journal of skills development, read set texts and interpret stimuli to create devised work.

In the Summer term, booster classes are offered after school to support coursework and exam revision and after school and lunchtimes are available for extra rehearsal and practice. An after school GCSE/ Arts Award Gold group is offered once a week. A full programme of theatre trips and opportunities for extra-curricular projects is offered throughout the year.

AQA GCSE Drama

This qualification is linear. Linear means that students undertake all non-exam assessment (NEA) in the certification year and sit the written exam at the end of the course.

Subject content

The subject content details the knowledge, understanding and skills that students are expected to develop throughout the course of study.

The subject content for GCSE Drama is divided into three components:

  • Understanding drama
  • Devising drama
  • Texts in practice

In the practical components students may specialise in performing, lighting, sound, set, costume and/or puppets.

Assessment

Component 1: Understanding drama

What's assessed:

  • Knowledge and understanding of drama and theatre
  • Study of one set play from a choice of six
  • Analysis and evaluation of the work of live theatre makers

How it's assessed:

  • Written exam: 1 hour and 45 minutes
  • Open book
  • 80 marks
  • 40% of GCSE

Component 2: Devising drama (practical)

What's assessed:

  • Process of creating devised drama
  • Performance of devised drama (students may contribute as performer or designer)
  • Analysis and evaluation of own work

How it's assessed:

  • Devising log (60 marks)
  • Devised performance (20 marks)
  • 80 marks in total
  • 40% of GCSE

This component is marked by teachers and moderated by AQA.

Component 3: Texts in practice (practical)

What's assessed:

  • Performance of two extracts from one play (students may contribute as performer or designer)
  • Free choice of play but it must contrast with the set play chosen for Component 1

How it's assessed:

  • Performance of Extract 1 (20 marks) and Extract 2 (20 marks)
  • 40 marks in total
  • 20% of GCSE

This component is marked by AQA.

Year 9

Devised work and extracts from different texts are explored as well as an introduction to the set text, eg.’Blood Brothers’ by Willy Russell or ‘Hansel and Gretel’ by Carl Grose. Exploration into genre and theatre practitioners will take place as well as mock practical assessments and two public performances-one in the Spring and one in the Summer.

For the last 5 years, we have supported students to take part in Raise Your Voice at The Minack Theatre at Land’s End, an annual Shakespeare project organised by an RSC vocal coach and professional West End MD. This year we will be taking part in a huge WW1 simulation at Lanhydrock together with Bodmin and Wenford Steam Railway and the local Regimental museum where our students will work alongside local professional actors over the Summer. Drama and History departments will be working together with Year 9.

Year 10

This is the first year of formal assessment for the GCSE. In this year the devised project takes place complete with accompanying journal and the set text is explored practically in preparation for the Year 10 written exams. Practitioners will be explored and theories applied to practical work. Visits to the theatre will be organised to explore roles in the industry and to watch professional performances. These will help to prepare a critical review for the written exam. Students will perform in the Autumn and Summer terms to a public audience.

Year 11

This is the final year of the GCSE course with the two scripted extracts of a play being prepared for the practical exam and the accompanying journal and preparation of the set text for the Mock exams and End of Year examination. Theatre visits will continue in order to prepare a critical review for the written exam. There will be an Autumn and Spring public performance by the Students; the Spring one being the final Performance showcase to family and friends.

KS5

Overview

AQA A Level/AS Level Drama and Theatre

This qualification is linear which means that students undertake all non-exam assessment (NEA) in the certification year and sit the written exam at the end of the course.

The subject content for AS Drama and Theatre is divided into two components:

  1. Interpreting drama
  2. Process and performance

In the practical component students may specialise in performing, lighting, sound, set, costume, puppets and/or directing.

Component 1: Interpreting drama

What's assessed:

  • Knowledge and understanding of drama and theatre
  • Study of one set play from a choice of seven Analysis and evaluation of the work of live theatre makers

How it's assessed:

  • Written exam: 2 hours
  • Open book
  • 80 marks 40% of AS

Component 2: Process and performance (practical)

What's assessed:

  • Practical exploration and theatrical interpretation of two extracts (Extract 1 and 2) each taken from a different play Methodology of a prescribed practitioner must be applied to Extract 2 Extract 2 is to be performed as a final assessed piece (students may contribute as performer, designer or director)
  • Portfolio evidencing interpretive process and analysis and evaluation of performance

How it's assessed:

  • Performance of Extract 2 (30 marks)
  • Portfolio (30 marks)
  • 60 marks in total
  • 60% of AS

This component is marked by teachers and moderated by AQA.

The Subject content for A2 is extended in that there is a second set text from a given list and the written exam is 3 hours. 40% of A level.

Component 2 is a devised Unit whereby a devised piece of work is to be made in a group using the style/ genre of a set practitioner. This is 30% of the A level. Working notes must accompany the process.

Component 3 is Making Theatre whereby 3 extracts of 3 different plays are performed. The final one is to be assessed as an exam and must show methodology of a set practitioner. This is 30% of the final A level. A final reflective report must accompany the practical work.

We are presently offering Level 3 Subsidiary Diploma in Production Arts for those students interested in Sound and lighting for the theatre.

Year 12

We start with practical work leading to a scripted extract which will be performed at St Austell speech and Drama festival and at Our Winter Warmer evening. This will be accompanied by a journal of process. We study our set text practically and undertake several controlled conditions past paper essay questions. We explore a contrasting scripted piece in groups accompanied by a journal, linked to a Drama practitioner. We see professional theatre and have workshops with professional practitioners and theatre companies.  We visit Falmouth, Plymouth and Marjons Universities and spend a day at Theatre Royal Plymouth. We take part in Masterclasses at the Universities and have workshops with Professional practitioners in and out of school. The annual West End London Residential Theatre Trip is offered to 6th form as first priority. We  see two west end productions, take part in two west end workshops and visit The Globe Theatre, The National Theatre and Harry Potter Studios. Each term there is a choice of Theatre productions to see in local and regional theatres as well as less conventional venues such as the site specific Wild works or Rogue Theatre in the woods at Tehidy or at the Gardens of Heligan or Kneehigh’s Asylum marquee. Arts Award Gold is offered in Year 12 and 13 as an extra qualification worth 16 UCAS points (an AS level) which encourages independent thinking and creativity as well as outstanding leadership.

Year 13

We explore a second set text practically and through written work , preparing for the written exam. We prepare a third practical piece linked to a practitioner on devised work and a final scripted extract from a play using the methodology of a prescribed practitioner.. We continue to watch professional theatre and analyse and review shows in readiness for the exam in May.

Audition practice is key for those wanting to audition for Drama school or Drama courses at Universities and help is given to students with their UCAS applications. We offer support through the William Clift Performing Arts service.