Drama is taught as a specialist subject at St Catherine’s. In Years 7 to 9, girls cover a range of skills through different topics, working in a range of group sizes and performing both scripted and devised pieces. Girls also learn about the technical side of theatre, practising working with sound and light boards. In Drama, we aim to build confidence and expertise through tackling topics ranging from the seriousness of cultural integration to the light-heartedness of superheroes. We build a safe, fun environment for girls to explore the magic of theatre in our purpose built Drama Studio.
AQA is our chosen exam board for both GCSE and A level. At GCSE, girls study a set text, as well as building on their devising skills and scripted work, both performance and technical. At A level, this is continued with the study of two set texts and working in the style of chosen practitioners. Girls thoroughly enjoy the variety of work covered and the ability to explore so many different styles.
Over the course of GCSE and A level, we offer many other opportunities. Our annual soiree offers parents and family the opportunity to see the creative and challenging work their daughters are producing in class. Girls can also undertake a workshop with Frantic Assembly, where a specialised professional teaches movement and lifts in the style of The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, leading to them flying all over the place.
There are also a number of trips offered. Year 7 travel to the pantomime, and we also take trips to local theatres such as Richmond and Orange Tree Theatres, as well as the Lyric, Hammersmith and theatres in the West End. We try and visit plays which will challenge and inspire, in a variety of venues and genres.
Extra-curricular drama is also extremely popular! In recent years we have put on The Lion King, Sister Act and Bring It On! This year, girls will be singing their hearts out to Dolly Parton’s 9 to 5, which promises to be yet another show stopper. We also put on a play in the Summer term for Year 9 and upwards. Last year, it was Terry Pratchett’s ‘Wyrd Sisters’ at The Exchange, Twickenham. A cast from Years 6 to 8 also participated in the Shakespeare Schools Festival, performing an abridged and hilarious version of ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’. We also run Drama Club between productions, so there is always a way be involved.
At St Catherine’s, we aim to give everyone the chance to participate in Drama and Theatre, whether you are a musical enthusiast, a Shakespearian scholar, or an avante-garde artiste. We enable girls to develop their talents both on stage and backstage, and most importantly, a warm and encouraging atmosphere.
Mrs S Collett – Head of Drama
Mrs G Gillies