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Performing Arts

Drama LogoMusic Logo

The Team                                                                          

  • Mr N Blackwell - Director of Arts
  • Mr J Fenton-Vince - Director of Performing Arts / Head of Music
  • Mrs A Hawley - Head of Drama and Theatre
  • Miss C Simpson - Drama
  • Mrs K Coleman - Music
 
It is the view of the Performing Arts Department staff that every child has an entitlement to an aesthetic education as part of a broad and balanced curriculum, to which they have access under the National Curriculum. At key stage 3, all students participate in Drama and Music lessons every week. At key stage 4, students have the opportunity to take Drama & Theatre GCSE or Music GCSE. 6th Form students in key stage 5 can study Drama and Theatre A Level or Music A Level depending on subject demand.

The experience of live music and live performances should be part of every child’s education.

Performing Arts subjects can have a powerful motivational effect, and can help to develop positive attitudes in pupils of all ages and abilities.
We offer music lessons through the company Love Music, where professional musicians come into school to teach their instrument. Love Music offer lessons in guitar, piano, drums and singing. Please contact the Performing Arts Department for more information about the costs of Love Music lessons.

 

Career Opportunities in Performing Arts

In addition to studying Performing Arts at Higher Education level, a student may find employment opportunities in the caring professions, tourist and heritage industries, teaching, management and business enterprises, all of which welcome skills developed in Performing Arts.

The Performing Arts are fully recognised by the University sector; indeed Performing Arts courses are important examinations in the UK and are among the fastest growing courses

 

Performance Opportunities

We encourage students to perform in front of an audience right from Year 7. Performing opportunities within college regularly include class performances, assemblies and exam performances in the evenings. 
Every year Dance, Music and Drama students from Key Stage 3-5 are given the opportunity to work together on a full scale production of a musical. Past productions have included “High School Musical” “We will Rock you” “Bugsy Malone” “Grease” “Oliver” and “Annie”.
 

Key Stage 4

Key Stage 4 students have the opportunity to study both Drama, Theatre and Music at GCSE.
 

KS4 - Drama and Theatre

WJEC GCSE Drama
 
In Year 9 - 11, pupils have the opportunity to study GCSE WJEC Drama. This course will give pupils skills in creativity, personal growth, self-confidence, communication and analytical skills through the acquisition of knowledge, skills, understanding and the exercise of the imagination.
 
Pupils will be given opportunities to participate in and interpret their own and others' drama. They will investigate the forms, styles, and contexts of drama and will learn to work collaboratively to develop ideas, to express feelings, to experiment with technical elements and to reflect on their own and others' performances.
 

Course Content and Assessment

UNIT ONE: Devised Practical Performance (40%)
Controlled Assessment
 
TASK ONE – 10% Devised Performance 
Candidates will devise a practical performance based on a theme set by the exam board, linked to a practitioner or genre. During the rehearsal process candidates will study three different Theatre practitioners:
 
TASK TWO – 20% Devised Performance Log Book and 10% Evaluation
Candidates will complete a log book on the process of devising the practical work they complete in Task One, under formal supervision. They will also complete a written evaluation of the success of their final performance. 
 
UNIT TWO: Performance from a Text  (20%)
Candidates will be assessed on their acting, in a scene, from a published play. Pupils can choose any script they feel would be best suited to their acting style. This performance unit is assessed by a visiting examiner.
 
UNIT THREE: Written Examination  - Interpreting Theatre (40%)
Written Paper: 1½ hours
Candidates will be assessed on their ability to analyse one set text as an  actor, designer and director and to evaluate and analyse a live piece of theatre seen during the course.
 

Ks4 - Music

Pearson Edexcel GCSE Music
 
Studying music requires skill in performance, creativity and imagination and involves real teamwork.  It develops logical thinking and working in an analytical way, qualities which are needed in many lines of work.  It will enable you to continue to develop your own musical interests and abilities through an active involvement in the three musical activities: listening, composing and performing. 
 
If you don’t already play an instrument it is not too late to start learning at the beginning of Year nine. This is essential for the achievement of high grades.
 

Course Content and Assessment

Component 1: Performing 
  • 30% 60 marks
  • Solo performance Ensemble performance
  • Minimum duration: 4 minutes
Component 2: Composing
  • 30% 60 marks
  • Two compositions
  • 1. To a brief set by Edexcel
  • 2. Free
Component 3: Appraising (Listening)
  • 40% 80 marks
  • Examination in two sections.
Section one (68 marks)
  • 6 questions related to six of the eight set works learnt.
  • Dictation
  • Aural analysis to unseen piece of music
Section two – extended response (12 marks)
  • 1 question to compare/evaluate a set work and an unseen piece of music 
 

The GCSE topics and set works are:

 
Instrumental Music 1700-1820
  • JS Bach: 3rd mov Brandenburg no.5
  • Beethoven: 1st mov Piano sonata no.8
Vocal Music
  • Purcell: Music for a while
  • Queen: Killer Queen
Music for Stage and Screen
  • Schwartx: Defying Gravity (Wicked)
  • Williams: Main title/rebel blockade runner (Star Wars episode IV)
Fusions
  • Afro Celt: Release
  • Spalding: Samba Em Preludio
 
During lessons, we will be practising the four skills of listening, responding, composing & performing.
 
GCSE Music provides you with the opportunity to gain self-confidence through performing to others, develops team-working skills through performing with others, extends your creative and analytical skills and encourages a focus on continuous evaluation and refinement of work.
 

Key Stage 5

Sixth From students in KS5 will have the opportunity to study A-Level Drama and Theatre as well as an IB Standard Level in Music.
 

KS5 - Drama AND THEATRE

WJEC A-Level GCE Drama and Theatre Studies
 
In Year 12 pupils have the opportunity to study A-Level Drama & Theatre Studies.
The course provides a balance between the practical and the theoretical aspects of the subject. Candidates will read, analyse and act from recognised texts. They will also have the opportunity to develop their own work through improvisation and other theatrical techniques.
 

Drama and Theatre is a highly regarded ‘A’ level for University entrances often cited as an important entry into the creative industry or University related courses, and careers such as Law and Politics. Transferable skills for work including: development of excellent communication, collaborative and presentation skills.

Students selecting ‘A’ level Drama and Theatre at Hugh Christie will have an option to study towards their Silver or Gold Arts Award. Gold carries additional UCAS points and is often seen as the arts equivalent of the Duke of Edinburgh qualification. Students are taught as a company of actors with an emphasis on developing them as young creative arts leaders as well as securing a strong ‘A’ level base.

Course content

Component 1 (20%)

This is a practical and theoretical Component. Students select an extract from a set text and re-interpret it in the light of a theatre practitioner or theatre company’s methodologies from rehearsal to performance. They also design a reflective Creative Log which analyses and evaluates their creative rehearsal process and final live performance.

Component 2 (40%)

An exciting practical unit which is assessed in Spring of A2 by a visiting examiner from WJEC/ Eduqas. The Component consists of students’ developing, researching, refining, amending and performing a devised original piece alongside a scripted performance. Component content includes: research and development skills, performance skills, rehearsal techniques and how you communicate your artistic intentions to an audience.

Component 3 (40%)

A final written drama exam in June of A2 which includes three exciting set texts. All are explored and analysed from the perspective of an actor, director or designer. Award-winning: ‘The Curious Incident of a Dog in Night-Time,’ a contemporary example of total theatre is one, the Commedia Dell’Arte based high-paced farce ‘Accidental Death of an Anarchist’ is another and a pre-1956 text. This year’s cohort selected Shakespeare but I will teach to which ever text the majority of the group selects

Assessment

Component 1 (20%)

This is a practical and theoretical Component. Students select an extract from a set text and re-interpret it in the light of a theatre practitioner or theatre company’s methodologies from rehearsal to performance. They also design a reflective Creative Log which analyses and evaluates their creative rehearsal process and final live performance.

Component 2 (40%)

An exciting practical unit which is assessed in Spring of A2 by a visiting examiner from WJEC/ Eduqas. The Component consists of students’ developing, researching, refining, amending and performing a devised original piece alongside a scripted performance. Component content includes: research and development skills, performance skills, rehearsal techniques and how you communicate your artistic intentions to an audience.

Component 3 (40%)

A final written drama exam in June of A2 which includes three exciting set texts. All are explored and analysed from the perspective of an actor, director or designer. Award-winning: ‘The Curious Incident of a Dog in Night-Time,’ a contemporary example of total theatre is one, the Commedia Dell’Arte based high-paced farce ‘Accidental Death of an Anarchist’ is another and a pre-1956 text. This year’s cohort selected Shakespeare but I will teach to which ever text the majority of the group selects.


 KS5 - Music

IB Standard Level Music

 

The music department at Hugh Christie is a vibrant hub and a department that is growing from strength to strength offering the full range of instrumental lessons alongside an exciting and inspiring curriculum. At Sixth Form Level we follow the International Baccalaureate as a ‘gateway’ to university and beyond. There is an active extra-curricular programme and opportunities for students to explore every avenue within the Performing Arts whether it being involved in musical productions/concerts or writing music using our ‘state-of-the-art’ equipment using ‘Sibelius’.

The course enables students to:

· enjoy lifelong engagement with the arts

· become informed, reflective and critical

practitioners in the arts

· understand the dynamic and changing

nature of the arts

· explore and value the diversity of the arts

across time, place and cultures express

ideas with confidence and competence

· develop perceptual and analytical skills

· develop their knowledge and potential as

musicians, both personally and collaboratively.

Course Content

The listening paper is based on musical perception, reflected through analysis and examination of pieces of music. Section A relates to two prescribed works, of which students study one. Section B relates to music from different times and places, encompassing jazz/pop, western art music and world music. (2 hours exam, 50% of the course)

In the musical links investigation, through the study of pieces from two distinct musical cultures, students are encouraged to explore, analyse and examine the musical connections existing between two (or more) pieces of music. Through investigative study and analysis of the similarities and differences between the selected pieces of music, students learn to demonstrate significant musical links. (Written script of 2000 words, 20% of the course)

For the creating option, students create two 3- to 6-minute pieces, choosing from a wide range of styles and media, including traditional instruments, voices and/ or music technology, and reflect on their understanding of the intention, process and outcome of the pieces.

For the solo performing option, students must submit a programme of contrasting pieces in any style of music that is 15 minutes in length.

For the group performing option, a submission is made for students in the group of pieces selected from two or more public performances that is 20–30 minutes in length.

assessment

Assessment criteria are used to assess students’ achievement in music. These criteria are related to the assessment objectives established for the music course and to the group 6 grade descriptors. (50% of the course)