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WHAT WILL I STUDY IN A LEVEL THEATRE STUDIES?

Our A level students are expected to undertake a rigorous programme of study, but find it both rewarding and inspiring. The course covers the statutory requirements of the examination board, AQA, but also works to grow young leaders in drama with a broad range of extra-curricular opportunities that see our young people directing and choreographing productions, leading outreach programmes with primary pupils and using their experience to influence and coach younger pupils.

The A level course comprises the following aspect:

  • EdExcel course
  • Two year programme of study
  • Contains non-exam assessments (NEA) and final written examination
  • 60% practical
  • 40% written examination

Component 1 - Devising

Assessed on:

  • Application of a chosen practitioner
  • A written portfolio, documenting the devising process
  • A formal performance (internally assessed; externally moderated) 
  • 80 marks
  • 40% of A level

Examined by AQA

Component 2 – Text in performance

Assessed on:

  • Group performance of one key extract
  • A monologue from one key extract
  • A formal performance (externally assessed)
  • 60 marks
  • 20% of A level

Component 3 – Theatre makers in practice

Externally assessed on:

  • Section A: live theatre evaluation (extended response to live theatre)
  • Section B: page to stage – realising a performance text (extended response to unseen extract)
  • Section C: interpreting a performance text (extended response to seen text but unseen named section)
  • 80 marks
  • 40% of A level

Opportunities

As part of the experience of drama, at Hill House, we aim to provide our students with a range of opportunities that go both beyond the classroom and the curriculum. For instance in:

  • Workshops including visits from, and links to, West End stars.
  • School Productions and work with local schools provide students to take the responsibility of roles beyond performance and include co-director; vocal coach; choreographer; stage manager; lighting director.
  • Educational visits including London (West End and Off West End); CAST: performances; CAST: backstage; tour and workshop; West Yorkshire Playhouse; Sheffield Theatre Group.

WHERE DOES A LEVEL THEATRE STUDIES LEAD? 

Beyond A level drama a world of opportunity awaits. Degree courses in English literature, language, journalism and law are all academic courses that value the reflective skills cultivated as part of our course. Teaching courses, too, see drama as a useful A level, in terms of the use of its practical aspect, as well as the analytical and evaluative process that the subject demands. University courses in art and design and any element of the performing arts would also benefit greatly from the study of A level drama.

Drama schools may offer an audition only route to study. However, many are now looking at academic pedigree, as practical skills coupled with theoretical knowledge form a much more enticing combination as the theory learned at A level has a huge impact in the understanding and delivery of practical theatre.

Beyond studying drama, careers in journalism and broadcasting; scriptwriting, theatre management and acting as an agent are all possible ways to utilise this highly academic subject, beyond its obvious practical norms.