King James' School

Drama & Theatre Studies

What’s it all about? 

A level Drama & Theatre Studies offers you the opportunity to study many facets of theatre in a uniquely practical way. The course is written by AQA and is designed for students with a passion for theatre and performance. Much of the course is concerned with discovering how to transform words on the page into words on stage: the process of what happens to the drama text as a group of people get hold of it and begin to fashion a piece of live theatre from it. 

We have an outstanding team of staff who are dedicated and driven to inspire you and develop your skills as an actor, director or designer and we push you to be the best that you can possibly be. We believe in your ability to interact creativity and professionally with like-minded students. 

The school boasts exceptional facilities for drama. The drama tower, which opened in January 2006, houses three dedicated teaching and performance spaces. The three floors are professionally-themed to create a truly theatrical environment with illuminated poster frames, lighting, plush carpet and handrails. The studios are equipped with excellent lighting and sound facilities as well as blackout blinds, drapes and dance- mat flooring.  

Exam and Assessment Information: 

AQA - 7261, 7262

AS Modules

Component 1 - Interpreting Drama

What’s assessed :

  • Knowledge & understanding of drama & theatre.
  • Study of one set
  • Analysis and evaluation of the work of live theatre makers

 How it’s assessed : 2 hour written exam, open book, 40% of AS, 80 marks

 Component 2 - Process & Performance (practical)

What’s assessed :

  • Practical exploration & theatrical interpretation of two extracts each taken from a different play.
  • Methodology of prescribed practitioner must be applied to extract 2.
  • Extract 2 is to be performed as a final assessed piece (students may contribute as   performer, designer or director).
  • Portfolio evidencing interpretive process and analysis and evaluation of performance.

How its’s assessed : Performance of Extract 2 (30 marks), Portfolio (30 marks), 60 marks in total, 60% of AS.

A2 Modules 

Component 1 - Drama and Theatre

What’s assessed:

  • Knowledge & understanding of drama & theatre
  • Study of two set plays, one chosen from List A, one chosen from List B
  • Analysis and evaluation of the work of live theatre makers

How its assessed : 3 hour written exam, open book, 40% of A level, 80 marks.

Component 2 - Creating Original Drama

What’s assessed :

  • Process of creating devised drama
  • Performance of devised drama (students may contribute as performer, designer or director)
  • Devised piece must be influenced by the work and methodologies of one prescribed practitioner 

How it’s assessed : Working notebook (40 marks), Devised performance (20 marks) 60 marks in total 30% of A level

To get started:

A grade C or above in GSCE Drama or Performing Arts is desirable. This is a subject which requires a hands-on approach; indeed a large percentage of the final result is based on practical work, and you will be required to work closely with the rest of your group in problem-solving and communicating within a team. 

The course requires a large commitment from you in terms of contribution both in and out of lessons. Regular theatre visits and practical work supplement the academic studies. The emphasis of the course is very much on putting theory into practice.

What next? 

The role of the Arts within society has grown significantly throughout the years. This course is an excellent foundation for a direct degree in acting. It also equips students for further education in various pathways relating to media, arts, communication, teaching and events management. The scope for development is vast as Drama propels students to develop excellent skills of communication, leadership and artistic creativity.

Our students say … 

“I really like Theatre Studies as it allows you to be creative and imaginative with a small group who you can bond and work with closely.  You also have a strong relationship with the teachers who help you and make sure you achieve the best you possibly can.  I look forward to the lessons every week!”  Megan Wilson

Drama & Theatre Studies

Drama & Theatre Studies