St Anthony's School Hampstead

St Anthony's Girls School Hampstead

Our Ethos

St. Anthony's aims to provide high quality education in a caring, supportive and Catholic environment, infused by Christ's Gospel, in order that each of our pupils is able to develop fully as an individual, well-adjusted to the wider community.

Drama At St. Anthony's

 

Drama at St Anthony’s is primarily concerned with the development of pupils’ imagination, self-confidence and self- esteem. Alongside this students will develop a number of key Drama Skills which will prepare them for their performance showcases throughout curriculum.

The overriding aim is to provide a safe and inclusive environment in which pupils can work positively and creatively to enjoy their Drama.

Pupils are encouraged to understand that, as in any creative endeavour, learning through trial and error is the most important part. Through this process, one cannot be ‘wrong’. Every Drama group is encouraged to explore, enquire and interpret the various stimuli that are put before them, to create something that is original and interesting.

All pupils undertake the same projects and are given equal opportunities in each Drama sessions. Drama lessons and workshops are of course differentiated for students, as we all learn at different abilities.

Through creative drama in the classroom, the experience of rehearsing and the showcasing of plays, pupils will gain experience of theatre skills. However, it is important to remember that this is not the primary objective. Every year, those interested in enhancing such skills, have the opportunity to be in an after-school production of a Shakespeare play. All those that wish to be involved from Year 6 up to Year 8 can be.

Year 7 boys performing 'Lord of the Flies'

 

Through the teaching of drama it is hoped that the following aims will be promoted:

 

How Drama is taught across the School

 

Drama in Reception and Years 1–4 are taught by class teachers for 45 minutes per week.

In the Junior House, creativity and the use of Drama are incorporated into English, History, PHSEE, and RE, as well as performances in Assemblies and Christmas plays. Throughout the year, our Head of Drama, Niyazi Unugur, will also run tailored workshops for various groups.

 

Across Years 5, 6, 7 and 8, Niyazi teaches, supports and directs the boys in their work. In these year groups, the entire cohort is divided into three teaching modules for the Arts subjects: Drama, Music and Art. The modules are taught on a ‘carousel’ which rotates on a weekly basis. Lessons usually take place in the Drama studio and comprise two one-hour and 20 minutes lessons per week. As the boys approach their performance date, they are usually moved to work in the Junior House hall to ensure they are well prepared to perform in the space.

 

LAMDA is taught by an external specialist, Bernard Krichefski, an immensely experienced television drama producer, theatre director, playwright and screenwriter.

 

Bernard provides coaching to pupils for the LAMDA exams in Performance (Acting) and also offers coaching in Verse and Prose speaking. Like music exams, these exams are graded from Entry Level to Grade 8 but, instead of playing instrumental pieces, candidates perform solo dramatic scenes. Bernard stresses that the intention is in no way to turn boys into actors, but to build confidence and imagination and to contribute to an understanding of dramatic literature.   Results have been highly encouraging, with no more than a handful of straight passes and the majority of boys passing with Merit and Distinction.  Last term’s results, were particularly impressive with 8 out of 10 boys awarded Distinctions and these included the first boy at St. Anthony’s to gain a Distinction at Grade 7, which will, in due course, contribute a significant number of points in his UCAS application.  LAMDA exams are not limited to Acting and Bernard has begun to diversify into related fields.  So, this term, one Year 6 boy is taking an exam in Speaking Verse and Prose and another in Public Speaking.The idea is not to turn the children into professional actors, but to support the development of self-confidence, empathy and communication skills – something underpinning everything we already strive to do with Drama at St Anthony's.  More information on the LAMDA syllabus can be found here: LAMDA syllabus

Drama in Year 8

 

Year 8 will begin their performance work in the Autumn term, by devising a play based on the script “Room Service” by Allen Boretz and John Murray. The boys will use their experiences and skills in Drama to create, rehearse and direct their own version of this play. Niyazi will guide them through the comedy genre and support them through the devising process. They will then showcase they work to the Senior House students, staff and parents in February 2019.

Students will end their study in Drama with a Film Making project, where they will draw upon all their skills from the three years of study. Working with the Head of Drama, Niyazi Unugur, they will brainstorm, script, storyboard, pitch and produce their ideas for this year’s film making week. Once these have been given the green light they will refine their work and ideas through the pre-production stage. Finally they will film and edit their work during Film Making week and showcase their finished films at their end of year showcase event.

 

Drama in Year 7

 

Year 7 will be presenting “A Night of Comedy” in April 2019. Initial lessons will begin by exploring the comedy genre. Students will be asked to explore and create archetypal characters and gain an understanding of the generic codes and conventions. They will then begin devising their own short plays and sketches, making the characters and narrative for the play. Niyazi will support them through this process and at times they will be asked to direct each other. This performance will showcase to the Senior House students, staff and parents at the end of the Spring term.

In the Summer term Year 7 will learn the basic moves of Stage Combat. Continuing with their work from year 6, Speaking and Listening, and combining with this year’s focus, Physical and Spatial Awareness, this term the boys will be exploring a Shakespearean play, taking the words off the page and onto the stage where they belong!

Shakespeare is responsible for some of the greatest plays ever written and by proxy some of the greatest fights. Studying the fights practically, students will be encouraged to perform a Shakespearean text and gain a greater understanding the plays and their staging. The stage combat workshops will be lead and fully supported by the Head of Drama, Niyazi Unugur, who will cover the basics of unarmed stage combat skills, which are then utilised in a staging of the Shakespearian text. Slaps, Hair-pulls, Punches, Kicks, Strangles and reactions to each move will all be covered over this unit of study. Alongside this students will be expected to choreograph, learn lines, rehearse and perform their work to their class-mates in lesson and some of the best sequences will feature during the school’s annual Shakespeare Week.

 

Drama in Year 6

Year 6 will begin the Autumn term journeying to Middle-Earth to explore J.R.R Tolkien’s epic fantasy adventure “Lord of the Rings”. They will examine the different races that inhabit the world and playing them in various scenarios. As the story unfolds the boys will need to use the various skills of each member of the fellowship to solve puzzles and escape the imminent dangers that face them. There will be much more of a focus on body language, voice and movement in this term. Students will be asked to play many different characters and create clear distinctions between each of them. This means we will stand up and represent the characters and speak some of the lines – with plenty of opportunities for wearing crowns and wielding swords!

In the Spring and Summer terms Year 6 will be devising an original play based on ancient Greek Mythology. The students will need to write, create, rehearse and direct their own individual scenes within the play. This performance will showcase to the Senior House students, staff and parents at the end of the Summer term.

 

Drama in Year 5

Year 5 begin the Autumn term studying the characters from Alexandre Dumas's novel, “The Three Musketeers”. As they become familiar with the genre, characters and historical context we will then begin creating our own original musketeers, who will form part of Captain Treville’s New Musketeer Guard. Using their imagination, role-play and a number of dramatic devices the boys will be fully immersed into the world of 17th century Paris. The work will allow them to develop character language, practice their improvisational skills as well as developing their understanding of body language, movement and voice. Working in regiments of fours and fives, the newly formed Musketeers will need to work as teams, drawing on each other’s strengths to problem solve and ensure France, and it’s King, survive!

In the Spring term Year 5 will begin devising scenes and songs from Victor Hugo’s French historical novel “Les Misérables”. Working with Niyazi each class will be given an act within the play and two musical numbers that they will need to transform from the page to the stage. This performance will showcase to the Senior House students, staff and parents at the end of the Summer term.

 

Year 8 boys performing 'Teen People'

Drama Club

Drama Club is a long standing tradition at St Anthony’s School. Every year, those in the Senior House have the opportunity to be in an after-school production of a Shakespearean play. This year’s play will be ‘Macbeth’. Working with their director, Niyazi Unugur, the boys will be given support to master the learning of lines, forming of characters and creating larger ensemble pieces, in the exploration of the text.

Rehearsals take place on a Tuesday evenings form 4:00pm to 6:00pm. Not all cast members are required to attend every week, Niyazi will send out a termly call sheet to parents informing them who needs to attend and when. Drama Club performances take place in the early weeks of the Summer term, and are usually performed on two nights of the week.

Shakespeare Month takes place in the Summer term and all member of the school, teachers and students, are encouraged to take part. Throughout the month of May students are learning about Shakespeare. In the final week, a number of performances are showcased, these take the form of spoken word, mime and music, culminating in a final assembly for the SH. Shakespeare week is coordinated by our Head of Drama, Niyazi Unugur.