Performing Arts - Acting has been added to My Courses

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Course specifics

Entry Requirements

  • A minimum of 5 GCSE’s at grade 4 or above (including English Language). Level 2 vocational qualifications (e.g. BTEC/OCR) must be a merit grade or above and will count as 1 GCSE equivalent.
  • All students are required to audition for a place on the course which will consist of a practical workshop and the preparation of a 1-2 minute monologue.
  • Drama GCSE or equivalent Level 2 BTEC Diploma advantageous but NOT essential

25%exams

75%coursework

Exam board: Edexcel

89%of students gained Distinction and Distinction* grades (2019)

This practical course focuses on developing skills in performance. It is designed for Drama students who love to act, and wish to further their skills in a range of performance styles. It is largely contemporary in selection of texts and explores acting styles, performance skills and directing, as well as more conventional acting skills.

Students will complete the Extended Certificate over two years, which is the equivalent of one A-level.

You also have the option to specialise further by taking the Diploma in Performing Arts which is worth two A Level’s, where you will complete an additional 4 units on top of the 4 completed in your Extended Certificate (Acting) class. Typically, students on the Diploma have a very keen interest in all areas of Performing Arts, keen to explore the range of skills required for the industry and are looking to a pursue a career in this industry and/or wish to study their passion at a higher level. The courses attract UCAS points the same way as standard A-levels.

All students will become a member of the St Brendan’s Performing Arts Academy, which offers a range of opportunities with external industry professionals and cross-curricular links with other courses such as Dance, Drama and Music. We have strong links with local theatre companies, performing arts professionals, and offer workshops with them as part of the academy. We aim for every student to flourish and achieve their full potential. Developing your performance skills opens your horizons to this incredible Billion-pound industry that caters for over a million jobs in the UK (2.29 million creative industry jobs in the year up to September 2021).  For more information on the Performing Arts Academy, please see one of our experienced teachers.

Katie

Katie

Course Structure

UNITS

Extended Certificate

Diploma (as the Extended Certificate plus)

Externally Assessed Mandatory units

Unit 1: Investigating Practitioners’ work

Learners investigate the work of performing arts practitioners and develop critical analysis skills and contextual understanding of how practitioners communicate themes in their work.

Unit 5: Individual Performance commission

Learners understand the nature and purpose of commission work, responding individually to a specific commission brief by applying their performance skills.

Mandatory Units

Unit 2: Developing skills for techniques and performers

Learners explore technical performance skills with a focus on developing skills and techniques in at least two performance styles.

Unit 4: Performing Arts in the Community

Learners develop their knowledge and understanding of performing in the community, applying specialist skills and techniques to a community performance project.

 

Unit 3: Group Performance workshop

Learners explore and integrate creative, physical and vocal skills and techniques, working collaboratively to create a performance in response to a given stimulus.

Unit 6: Final Live Performance

This unit covers the practical exploration and application of specialist skills and techniques through the development and rehearsal of a final live performance to an audience.

 

Optional units

Unit 19: Acting Styles

 

Learners develop acting methods by exploring different acting styles. They will apply techniques to the development, rehearsal and performance of their practical work.

Unit 28: Variety Performance

 

Learners develop skills, techniques and understanding in variety performance, applying them to a practical act.

Course Delivery

The course is taught by specialist practitioners. Assignments are set at regular intervals throughout the course and a very high level of student involvement is expected in all areas. Lessons are a mixture of practical workshops and rehearsals, and theory based lessons, aimed to provide students with the necessary key skills required for further training in this area at HE or beyond. Performances are especially important and it is expected that evening rehearsals and performances will take priority over work or social commitments.

Assessment

Assignments are completed on a regular basis, and are both practical and theoretical. Students are expected to work independently to keep their folders updated, to include detailed information about their personal development in all areas. Performances will be assessed, but all work will also need to be accompanied by research, rehearsal and evaluative notes in a written portfolio folder. The students can opt to submit their internally assessed work in a range of formats including; blogs, PowerPoint presentations, via voice, video diary and written work. Some elements of the course are externally assessed. Unit 1 is a prepared written assessment taken under exam conditions on a set date by the exam board.  Unit 5 is a practical assessment where learners prepare individual performances in response to a given brief.

Enrichment

You will automatically become a member of our highly successful St Brendan’s Performing Arts Academy which provides an enrichment programme and exclusive opportunities in association with our partner organisations: National Connections Project & 3rd Stage Dance Company. Students benefit from regular workshops, performance opportunities, visiting speakers and theatre trips both locally and in London.

As this is a very practical course, and looking to use real theatre experiences wherever possible, there is an expectation that students will be available to perform in a range of showcases throughout the year usually in the evenings, and also students should all experience being part of a supporting backstage crew. All students will be timetabled to do Enrichment weekly as extra rehearsal time to support their practical work.

Resources

Classes are taught in the purpose-built theatre, which has full access to a sophisticated range of lighting and sound equipment, and theatre technician. There is an adjoining classroom used for theory work and exam preparation. Additionally, Performing Arts has a Dance Studio with a sprung floor, and further rehearsal spaces.

Additional Costs

Students are expected to purchase a Performing Arts Academy t-shirt, and take part in theatre trips where a charge will be made based on ticket price and cost of transport. There are further opportunities such as workshops and the chance to take part in a range of courses and enrichment activities, some of which come at a small cost.

Entry Requirements

5 GCSEs at grade 4 or above or the equivalent from four subject areas including GCSE English Language, and Drama, if studied. All students will prepare for, and attend, a workshop audition. These take place in the spring/summer term and students will be invited to attend following their application. Students will prepare a monologue and will take part in a practical workshop. Students should be able to demonstrate confidence as a performer, be able to work confidently as part of a group and show a suitable skill basis from which to develop.

Partnerships and Links

We have strong links with local theatre companies and professional actors, and offer workshops with them as part of the course. This year, companies have included The Paper Birds and Frantic Assembly. Students benefit from regular workshops, visiting speakers and theatre trips.

Progression

Level 3 BTECs are valued by employers and higher education providers.  Students completing this course have gone on to Higher Education courses such as BA Honours degrees in Drama, Performing Arts, and a selection of students have gone on to Performing Arts or Drama Schools. The education element of the course would also be ideal for a teaching qualification and career, or to gain work in a theatre education department. Students may progress into careers such as acting, theatre backstage production and arts management. In addition to this, the transferable skills developed over the duration of the course also enable students to progress into a range of other employment in the creative industries, business, law and teaching.

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