Adventures in Drama… the year so far…

The Drama department has been a busy place since September with a huge variety of things going on.

We started this school year with visits from the Guildhall Creative Roadshow for Year 9 who came and did a workshop with both Year 9 Acting groups about careers within the Creative industries and various pathways. These workshops funded by Portsmouth Guildhall are always informative and great fun, made even better because they are delivered by an ex-ALNS student – Ben Clabon.

Four of our students had the opportunity to work in a real TV studio recording monologues they had written as part of an on-going project with the charity Stonewall. We are really excited that these will be shared within our school at Awards Evening before being used as part of National Stonewall training!

The Drama ambassadors had the amazing opportunity to “teach the teacher” during Teach Portsmouth week. They ran part of workshop on using voice in teaching and took the lead which was just brilliant for both the teachers and students.

In KS3 lessons students have been working on how to build tension in their work and create a “spooky” atmosphere for Halloween. Year 7 have told stories about magical Haunted Houses, Year 8 have actually created Haunted Houses and taken the class on tour through their houses. Some of the work created was fantastic and genuinely spooky.

Year 9 have worked with students from the Portsmouth University to explore melodrama and storytelling to create work, it is always great to have students who are training work with our young people. This year they were overwhelmed with how talented the Year 9 students are!

Year 10 had a visit from Portsmouth college for a workshop which then led to a fantastic afternoon at the college watching a dress rehearsal for their 2nd Year BTEC production of “The Wonderful World of Dissocia” which was a challenging play all about mental health issues, it was a really valuable experience for our students to see some great live theatre performed by some very talented young people at the college.

Year 11 had a whole PD Day in BTEC Acting where they have started to explore their Unit 2 performance piece. They will performing a powerful piece of “real-life” theatre called “I love you Mum, I promise I won’t die.” Watching the performance really challenged the group as it is very powerful and hard-hitting. I am looking forward to developing their performance of the piece with them in lessons.

Just before October half term our students were also invited to perform on stage at the Kings Theatre in Southsea with ‘The Wall of Floyd’ a fantastic Pink Floyd tribute band. The students got a real taste of live rock performance as they stood on stage singing ‘Another Brick in the Wall’ to over 600 members of the audience. What an experience! The band have invited us back to do it all again next year with even more students.

Extra-Curricular Drama is HUGE this year. There are over 40 students involved in this year's production of FAME, over 30 students regularly attending KS3 Drama Club, there are now 30 Drama ambassadors and over 40 involved in Rock Challenge plus the Music and Dance clubs that are running. Look out for the performances from these amazing students coming VERY SOON!

Still to come this term from the department are performance at Awards Evening which will include the first showing of the Stonewall performances and an extract from FAME, a Performing Arts PD Day for Year 8, a very exciting reward trip to see Peter Pan at the New Theatre Royal and of course our Christmas Performing Arts Festival with a panto from the KS3 Drama Club along with lots of other exciting performances.

What a great start to this year.

Mrs Wisbey