Drama at Palmers Green High School is an exciting blend of practical, theory, movement and voice. It plays an integral role in building transferable interpersonal skills as well as developing pupils’ understanding of culture and the Arts. The department strives to build and install confidence in all pupils and to provide a platform for expression and creativity.
Pupils focus on creating characters and presenting themselves confidently on stage. They study the basics of performance skills through an ‘Introduction to Drama’ unit and are transported to Elizabethan England, where they are tasked with modernising Shakespeare’s ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’. The course culminates in a production of a short play in which the whole year group participates.
Year 8 provides pupils with the opportunity to time-travel through theatre history. We begin in ancient Greece and explore through to 16th century Italy, where pupils study Commedia dell’arte. Pupils also study pantomime, melodrama and silent movies. Within this, pupils work on improvisation, the acting space and stage layout, poetry and choral speaking. Written analysis and reflection are embedded into all units, providing pupils with the opportunity to develop their written, theoretical understanding and ability.
Year 9 drama is focused on developing a foundation of the skills and knowledge required at GCSE level. Pupils are introduced to the concept of ‘practitioners’ by exploring naturalism and non-naturalism. Pupils experience a workshop and visit from a professional theatre company and begin to analyse and evaluate live theatre through a range of practical and written means. Pupils begin work on scripted monologues and explore the function of verbatim theatre in devising.
Please click on the link to see the GCSE curriculum (the link takes you to the Drama page in the Options booklet)
The Drama and English departments work together to provide a busy programme of visits by theatre companies to the School and trips to local and London theatres for all year groups. Recent favourites have been A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time and Cinderella to name but a few. Links have been established with The Paper Birds, a devising theatre company, Trestle, who are mask-based and Splendid Theatre Productions who give inspiring performances and lively workshops.
A whole-school production is performed annually by all Senior pupils. Alongside this, a KS3 Drama club is open to pupils to build and explore their love of Drama in a practical and enjoyable setting.
|Drama Drop-In (Theory)||10-11|
|Drama Drop-In Practical||7-11|
|LAMDA (Speech and Drama)||7-11|
In addition to timetabled Drama lessons, girls can opt to take part in group Speech & Drama sessions as an extra activity at lunchtime or after school. Each group works towards a LAMDA exam in the Summer Term.