The Drama and Theatre course is a mixture of Practical and Theory which can be at time very challenging as we find the balance between taking the theory and putting it into practice. We cover a vast range of areas in relation to theatrical productions. You will analyse and evaluate all aspects of Drama and Theatre including; acting, characterisation, directing, Lighting, Sound, Staging, Set, Costume all while interpreting set texts from different time periods. It is truly an exciting course that prepares you not only for life in the performing arts but also provides you with an arsenal of skills and tools for life and employment in the future. You will have access to the purpose-built Performing Arts department facilities; performance theatre, practice rooms, music recording studio, dance studio, and equipment. The Performing Arts department is a creative hub and our experienced team with current industry experience holds a wealth of knowledge.
The Drama and Theatre A-Level is a wonderful option for you to choose to study. It can be studied alongside any of the other courses at ASFC. Not only that but we consistently make connections to all other subjects throughout the course. There is not a single subject that cannot be tied into the study of Drama and Theatre. Throughout the course we track the development of theatre from the Ancient Greeks to the modern day, through your research until specific topics you will discover a world of wonders tracking your own progress and knowledge and understand about History, Philosophy, Psychology, Literature and much much more the opportunities are endless. From the study of various practitioners of Theatre you find exciting information which you will use to inspire and drive you further into which ever area you find most interesting.
You will have access to the purpose built Performing Arts department facilities; performance theatre, practice rooms, music recording studio, dance studio, and equipment. The Performing Arts department is a creative hub and our experienced team with current industry experience holds a wealth of knowledge.
Component 1 Devising Performance and Portfolio
You will be able to let the creative juices flow and enter a world of imagination, as you devise an original piece of theatre, developed from a stimulus. Along with developing an Actors Journal, to document the process that you have gone through to achieve your own performance.
Component 2 Text in Performance
During this component you will be studying two play texts to later perform extracts, one Group Performance and one Monologue or Duologue. Giving you a taste of performing on stage, in front of a live audience, two completely different forms of play looking at various theatre practitioners and how they shaped the theatrical world that we know today.
Component 3 Theatre Makers in Practice
During component 3 you will be assessed in three areas; 1. Evaluating a live theatre performance. 2. Page to stage, how you would as a theatre maker put on a show; how you would direct it, which practitioner you would be influenced by. It allows you to have complete creative control of how you would stage a performance. 3. Interpreting a performance text, this is where we delve into the history of the theatre and discover new and re-imagined ways of putting on classical theatrical texts for a modern day audience. Highlighting the conditions they would have originally been performed in.
In your first year studying A-Level Drama and Theatre, we will be looking into our set texts and doing all of the preparation necessary for not only the written exam at the end of your 2nd year but also bringing every member of the class to the same level with their knowledge and understanding of Drama and Theatre. The Drama course is a fantastic umbrella subject which can be studied alongside any other subject that is on offer at ASFC. The written exam is made up of 3 sections. In Section A you will answer a question on Live Theatre which is asking you to analyse and evaluate the production which you have seen. This means that we get to visit our local Theatre’s in and around Manchester. The theatre Trips that we go on have involved attending the following Theatre; The Lowry, The Royal Exchange, Home and Oldham Coliseum to name a few. This is a wonderfully exciting opportunity for us all to watch professional production that we use for inspiration. Section B requires the study of our first set text ‘Machinal’ with Expressionism. As part of this we look closely at the expressionist movement not only in theatre but also in film and art. You will answer 2 questions in the written exam for this text one from the perspective of a performer and the other as a designer. This lends itself perfectly to be able to practically explore both the performance elements and the design elements to discover how theatre is created. It is integral that we study the theory in the classroom before entering the theatre to apply our knowledge and understanding to the practical aspects of performance and design. This perfectly prepares you for our 2nd set text ‘Lysistrata’ which is Section C of the Written Exam. Lysistrata is an Ancient Greek Comedy which is full of amazing and interesting moments that speak to our modern day and is also choker-block full of hilarious innuendos and double entendre. We look at ‘Lysistrata’ through the lens of a Director which give you the opportunity to explore and develop your directorial skill’s while also utilising the Methodologies of Bertolt Brecht, a German Theatre Practitioner, who is responsible for the development of Epic Theatre which is Political in nature. This then allows you to create and develop your own Production concept to explore putting the play ‘Lysistrata’ on as a full scale production for a contemporary audience.
The A1 year is designed to ensure preparation for the A2 year which is where we have a more performance based focus. During the A2 year students will undertake 3 performance exams and their coursework element totalling 60% of the course. We begin the year with our initial exploration of Artaud and The Theatre of Cruelty, we delve deep into the methodologies, techniques and theories that make up this performance style as well as undertaking research on the Man himself. These are then connected to our Devising Skills as students will be expected to create their own 20-30 minute performance using the Theatre of Cruelty as an influential framework; this is done in conjunction with studying another play that we will use as a stimulus to inspire the student’s own
performance. The Devising process is one of creative freedom where the students endeavour to provide research to support their own ideas that can be developed into the aims and intentions of their practical piece of theatre, in which they are in charge of all aspects including design and they will hold and leader production meetings with their teacher and our dedicated technicians who have years of experience of designing and performing in a range of theatrical pieces. The performances will take place before the Christmas break as the student’s will be building their Portfolio (the coursework element) alongside and keeping an actor’s journal which will allow them to theoretically convey the meaning behind their performance. After Christmas in the spring term we have the other 2 exam performances to prepare and perform. They are both scripted pieces that we will perform in our Theatre, one is a Monologue or Duologue and the other is a Group Performance. The script choice change every year so that we can find the best text to suit the student’s strengths as they will be performing in front of a Visiting Examiner. During the Spring Term we will have support sessions for the completion of the student’s portfolio as well as support sessions for the written exam which will continue into the Easter Break. Once we return from the Easter Break we regain a full focus on the Written Exam (40% of the course). The Drama lessons will continue after student’s are on Exam leave and these become troubleshooting/Exam Techniques session that become bespoke once student’s express an area of concern they have.
Studied Drama and Theatre from 2008-2010
Actor. Recently starred in Coronation Street and Waterloo Road.
Studied Drama, Sociology and Law
Went on to study Acting at the Liverpool Institute of Performing Arts (LIPA)
Achieved A*A*B in Drama, Photography and History
Recently starred in Coronation Street.
I’m at Arden School of Theatre studying BA Honours in Acting for Live and Recorded Media. Doing drama at Ashton Sixth Form College really stood me in good stead to do my drama school auditions. This course is very independent and requires you to do a lot of learning and teaching at home and so this has not only helped me going to drama school but has also helped a lot of my friends who are doing University courses as it is very independent learning based. Chris is amazing teacher, he was always there to help me and he put in extra hours to help me with audition pieces and was always on hand if I ever needed anything in college. Drama is such a good course to do regardless of the career you would like to go into as it gives you the discipline, confidence and most importantly resilience to mature into the well rounded individual you are when you leave Ashton Sixth Form.
Studied Drama and Theatre
ASFC impacted me in an immeasurable way. The college gave me the foundations to take onto university & into my chosen profession. After college I took time out from education to work in the acting industry & later pursued a university degree in Podiatry. I am now an Actor working on TV & Stage & a Podiatrist.
This course provides you with the opportunity to progress on to Higher Education, employment or further training. Our students have progressed to:
Acting at the Liverpool Institute of Performing Arts (LIPA)
Acting for Live and Recorded Media at the Arden School of Theatre
Drama at the University of Huddersfield
Drama and Creative Writing at the University of Salford
Drama and Theatre Practice at the University of Plymouth
Drama and Film Studies at Edge Hill University
Media and Performance at the University of Salford
Drama Theatre and Performance at Lancaster University