Qualification: A-Level | Exam board: Edexcel
It is vital that you are able to work with a range of people and that you are prepared to commit to rehearsal schedules; these often take place during lunchtimes and after hours, and are often organised by members of the class, so self-motivation is important.
You should be keen on acting, directing or the more technical side of theatre and wish to develop your skills in some or all of these areas.
People sometimes make the mistake of thinking that Drama & Theatre Studies is all practical, but this is not the case. There is a certain amount of written work involved, a portfolio in the first year and a written examination in the final year. If you enjoy the study of plays and the opportunity to be creative this is the course for you.
The skills that you learn through this course are transferable to any course that you wish to pursue further. You will learn how to be a team-player, a leader, direct others and improve your confidence in public speaking and performing in front of an audience. The course also taps into your creative skills, how you can create work from ideas and design the aesthetics to go alongside it.
COMPONENT ONE: DEVISING
Coursework: 40% of the qualification 80 marks
- Devise an original performance piece
- Use one key extract from a performance text and a theatre practitioner as stimuli
- Use a famous practitioner as your chosen style (Complicite)
- Written portfolio.
COMPONENT TWO: TEXT IN PERFORMANCE
Coursework: 20% of the qualification 60 marks
- A group performance/design realisation of one key extract from a performance text
- A monologue or duologue performance/design realisation from one key extract from a different performance text
- The Sixth Form’s choice of performance texts and extracts, with student consultation
COMPONENT THREE: THEATRE MAKERS IN PRACTICE
Written examination: 2 hours 30 minutes 40% of the qualification 80 marks
- Live theatre evaluation – choice of performance
- Practical exploration and study of a complete performance text – focusing on how this can be realised for performance and design
- Practical exploration and interpretation of another complete performance text, in light of a chosen theatre practitioner – focusing on how this text could be reimagined for a contemporary audience.
The course offers opportunities to see live theatre in the West End and local theatres. It will also offer two workshops, one with the practitioners that you are studying for component one and one with another Theatre company.
The year twos run an event just before or after Halloween. In the past two years this has been a live actor Horror Maze and Murder Mystery Performance. Some extra rehearsals are supervised by the staff to give guidance on the performance and extra sessions for coursework or exam revision are given before the time of submission/entry.
COMPONENT ONE – DEVISING
Internally assessed and externally moderated. There are two parts to the assessment:
1) A portfolio (60 marks, assessing AO1 and AO4) the portfolio submission recommendations are:
- can be handwritten/typed evidence between 2500–3000 words
- can be a combination of handwritten/ typed evidence (between 1250–1500 words).
2) The devised performance/design realisation (20 marks, assessing AO2).
COMPONENT TWO – TEXT IN PERFORMANCE
Externally moderated. There are two parts to the assessment:
1) The group performance/design realisation (32 marks, assessing AO2)
2) A monologue or duologue performance/design realisation (16 marks, assessing AO2).
COMPONENT THREE – THEATRE MAKERS IN PRACTICE: EXAM
Section A: Live Theatre Evaluation – 16 marks
- Students answer one extended response question from a choice of two requiring them to analyse and evaluate a live theatre performance they have seen
- Students are allowed to bring in theatre evaluation notes of up to a maximum of 500 words.
Section B: Page to Stage: Realising a Performance Text – 36 marks
- Students answer two extended response questions on how they might interpret and realise an unseen extract in performance from their chosen text
- Students answer from the perspective of a performer and a designer
- Performance texts are not allowed in the examination as extracts will be provided.
Section C: Interpreting a Performance -Text 24 marks
- Students will answer one extended response question from a choice of two based on an unseen named section from their chosen performance text. Students will demonstrate how their re-imagined production concept will communicate ideas to a contemporary audience. Students will also need to outline how the work of their chosen theatre practitioner has influenced their overall production concept and demonstrate an awareness of the performance text in its original performance conditions.
Standard entry requirements
- At least five GCSEs at grades 9-4 including English Language and Maths (one Vocational or Technical qualification at Merit or above may be counted)
- At least grade 4 (or Merit for Vocational or Technical qualifications) in any subject(s) that you have taken at GCSE and wish to continue studying at Level 3
- Average GCSE (best 8) of at least 4 (38 on the old points table)
- Grade 4 (or Merit), at least, in any subject previously studied
- Students will take either 3 A-Level subjects or 1 Diploma subject with 1 A-Level