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Drama is a vibrant and innovative department. We pride ourselves on inspiring a strong work ethic amongst the students, both as individuals and as members of a group. This philosophy at the heart of the department allows us to produce work of the highest standard at GCSE and A level. This is not only down to outstanding teaching but having the means to create an inspirational environment. We have a multi-purpose theatre with excellent technical facilities. At exam level the students are given the opportunity to explore the potential effects of set, sound and lighting.

Across the curriculum, students are introduced to a range of different theatre styles and genres which inspires their own devising work. There are regular theatre trips for all exam groups. We build on strong relationships with professional theatre companies. We introduce new and exciting opportunities in the form of workshops. The enthusiasm for the subject begins to build in Year 8 and grows stronger as the students make their way through Key Stage 3. Drama has the ability to develop confidence and empower students, allowing them to make mistakes and solve their own problems. Student/teacher relationships are based on providing a secure learning environment where communication is fundamental to achievement.

Key Stage 3 is about experiencing what is possible within the realms of your imagination but with a little bit of structure. The work is fun, inclusive and focuses on building key skills, such as communication, collaboration and co-operation. It ranges from puppet theatre in Year 8 to mask work in Year 10. Those who opt for GCSE drama will follow the AQA Drama and Theatre Studies course which allows the students to fully embrace the subject and develop their knowledge and understanding of theatre from a number of different perspectives.

At St Mary’s we have an exceptional extra-curricular programme for our drama students. We have a Junior Drama Club which revolves around a public performance in front of parents and friends. The school productions involve working with a professional theatre team, where the discipline required to be an actor is premised. The school connects with professional production companies such as ‘Production Services Ireland’, to provide students with opportunities to develop advanced technical skills. AS and A level students have the opportunity to go on the popular annual London drama trip to witness the best of the West End.

Teaching Staff

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Mr P Laverty

Head of Department

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Mrs C McComb

Assistant Head of Department

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Mrs C Wright – Shared Education, Edmund Rice Initiatives, Social Justice Advocacy

Head of Department

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Miss F Donnelly


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Course Curriculum

Course Outline

Year 8

Students receive one lesson per week, through which they are introduced to the key drama skills, such as tableaux, mime puppets, stage fighting, staying in role

Curriculum Content: Students develop basic performing skills, while enhancing their expressive skills and self-confidence.

Students will have the opportunity to become involved in a performance in front of friends and family, should they wish to.


Year 9

Students receive one lesson per week, through which they develop the key drama skills, including Still Images, Thought Tracking, Hot-Seating, Cross Cutting and Narration.

Students develop their team-work skills and work both independently and as part of a larger group.

Curriculum Content: Students explore a range of themes and issues in Year 8, including bullying and peer pressure, as well as exploring different approaches to building and developing a character.


Year 10

Students explore different theatrical genres, including Physical Theatre. Students are given the opportunity to work with scripts and to devise their own improvisations based around various themes.

Curriculum Content: Opportunities for a more devised and original kind of drama will be encouraged in Year 10


Course Offerings

Qualifications Obtainable                                                         Awarding Body

Key Stage 4 Courses

Drama and Theatre Studies

GCSE                                                                     AQA


Key Stage 5 Courses

Drama and Theatre Studies       A Level                                                                   Pearson/Edexcel

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