Upper V Drama GCSE

Posted: 22nd March 2018

‘Antigone’ performed.

Throughout the year St Augustine’s Priory sees many dramatic productions.  Whether it be the Nursery and Preps Nativities in December, the whole school production, or the year group performances, Drama is a popular subject.  GCSE and A Level Drama can both be studied here and Mrs Brown, Head of Drama, reports on the recent Upper V GCSE performance of ‘Antigone’.

‘On Tuesday 6th March the Upper V Drama GCSE pupils performed scenes from Jean Anouilh’s Antigone, a tragedy inspired by Greek mythology, to an OCR examiner and parents for their Presenting and Performing Texts component.  The students engaged intelligently with the themes in the text, such as the individual versus the state and dictatorship; interpreting the text to create their own artistic vision as directors and performers.

Ms Hagerty and I were so very impressed by the work ethic, talent and mature approach of all the pupils. Their exam had been snowed off once, but this hitch didn’t shake their focus to succeed. We felt they really stretched themselves and produced thoughtful and accomplished pieces as a result.’

Here are some of the students’ comments on their experience.

Lauren McKinnon comments, ‘I found the storyline of Antigone really empowering and loved seeing everyone’s own twist on the classic play.  I also enjoyed finding the right medium between working independently and asking for help when needed.  Overall, I loved this component and am very pleased with the outcome.  I am looking forward to pursuing Drama further at A Level.’

Rayan Awad said, ‘Through my final experience with my GCSE Drama performance my confidence in acting has risen tremendously.  I felt I was able to express my character’s emotions successfully to the audience using costumes and props which my group and I spent time preparing.’

While Nell Dobson noted, ‘I found it interesting how, despite the fact that we were all performing the same play, and some of us the same scenes, each one of us had a completely different interpretation which meant there was a huge contrast of themes in our performances.’

Alicia Peacock commented, ‘I found it very interesting working on a play with such modern themes, such as suicide.  It was insightful learning about such themes in such a different way, adding a level of understanding of how a character such as Creon would feel, after three members of his family committed suicide’.

Aoife Pedreschi adds, ‘I really enjoyed the splendid workshop and learn very valuable techniques.  I found it interesting how only 7% of a performance on stage is words, but 55% is body language and the remaining 38% is tone.  This led me to consider my corporeal significance on stage as well as my aural resonance.’

Gabriella Philp commented, ‘We were able to talk to the examiner before the performance, which made us more comfortable and relaxed before the exam!  I found this component really useful to learn in learning to develop my character and learn new acting techniques.  By learning about Antigone it was so interesting to discover how a person could renounce happiness and appear distant from others.’

Molly Pollock Tornabuoni concludes, ‘My preparation for Antigone was joyful! Learning new skills and partaking in workshops really help to form and develop my acting techniques.  Antigone as a play is one of my favourites, touching on the theme of happiness which often we as a society quest and strive for.  I loved the psychological aspects of the play – humanity’s quest for happiness and fighting for justice.’

Categories: Priory Post Senior Whole School