Our GCSE Drama students who this year produced two outstanding performances of their own devised pieces.
The first piece drew on a ‘Lord of the Flies’ concept; it started with a host of mismatched characters on an island retreat. But their respected religious leader turns out to be a corrupt alcoholic. The group get lost, and have to struggle for survival in isolation. Personalities clash and violence is unleashed as the group struggle to make their way back to civilisation.
The second group focussed on the fickle nature of fame. Their piece charted the rise and fall of stars in music industrty. A successful heavy metal band falls out of favour and are dropped by their label. There are distraught fans as another band is ’discovered’and promoted by the label execs. Fortunes are made, lost and exchanged in a struggle between money and art.
Drama is taught to all students at the College from the age of 11 in a dedicated studio space. Students also have the opportunity to take LAMDA grade exams in Speech and Drama as well as GCSE Drama.
Rochester Independent College offers Drama at GCSE level and Theatre Studies at A level. London’s West End is only a 40 minute train journey away and RIC students benefit from broad range of trips to see a range of plays and performances.
As well as GCSE and A level students also have the opportunity to take LAMDA grade exams in Speech and Drama. These qualifications also carry UCAS points for university entrance.
In our own purpose built hall and drama studio we have recently welcomed ‘The Trials of Oscar Wilde’ a professional production directly from the West End. See news for more details.
Trips enjoyed over the past few years have included Broadway hits ‘Wicked’ and Avenue Q, Lord of the Rings, Tom Stoppard’s ‘Rock and Roll’ at The Royal Court, Alan Bennett’s ‘The History Boys’, Peter Shaffer’s ‘Equus’, ‘The Rocky Horror Show’, the West End revival of ‘Cabaret’ and the Young Vic version of ‘Vernon God Little.’
Highlights were trips to Punchdrunk ‘s new version of ‘The Masque of the Red Death’ at the Battersea Arts Centre, Complicite’s new show ‘A Disappearing Number’ at the Barbican and ‘Citizenship’ and ‘Chatroom’ at the National Theatre and ‘Billy Elliott.’
Other trips include Matthew Bourne’s version of Oscar Wilde’s gothic fable Dorian Gray at Sadlers Wells and a ballet version of Tim Burton’s ‘Edward Scissorhands’ as well as Jude Law and David Tennant in two different West End versions of Shakespeare’s Hamlet! Also attended were ‘Six Characters in Search of an Author’, ‘War Horse’ at the National, the Menier Chocolate Factory’s production of Sondheim’s ‘A Little Night Music’, Sam Mendes’s Bridge Project production of The Cherry Orchard at the Old Vic, Ian Mckellen and Patrick Stewart in ‘Waiting for Godot’, ‘Spring Awakening’ and ‘A Doll’s House’ at the Donmar.
The students went to Shunt’s Money where RIC students were served a glass of champagne and engaged in a plastic ball fight during the interval and spoke to the cast and crew after the performance, as well as ‘Enron’, ‘Jerusalem’, ‘Educating Rita’, Complicite’s ‘Endgame’, the Broadway version of ‘Cat on a Hot Tin Roof’, ‘Legally Blonde’, Ibsen’s ‘Ghosts’, Brecht’s ‘Mother Courage’ at the National, ‘Insane In The Brain’ and ‘Oliver.’
Trips last year included Sarah Kane’s ‘Blasted’ and ‘Punk Rock’ at the Lyric, Hammersmith, the Olivier award winning ‘Clybourne Park’, the Royal Ballet’s ‘Romeo and Juliet’ at the 02 arena, Catherine Tate and David Tennant in ‘Much Ado About Nothing’, Terry Gilliam’s take on Berlioz’s ‘Faust’ at the ENO, ‘La Boheme’ at the King’s Head in Islington, ‘Season’s Greetings’, ‘Hamlet’ and Earthquakes In London at the National, ‘Dr Faustus’ at the Globe and the theatrical event walking tour Accomplice: London.