Dramatic Arts

Drama is concerned both with the workings of the imagination and with the discipline of craftsmanship – a part of every child’s life, not the privilege of the gifted few picked for a special occasion.


AIMS
To refine the student’s understanding and use of dramatic communication through the components: movement, speech, action, plot and performance area.  Further to use dramatic communication successfully in order to explore, understand and communicate issues, themes and ideas which lend themselves to exploration in this art medium.


COURSE OUTLINE

Grade 10 :    The course is divided into three sections

  1. Principles of Drama – plays
  2. Theatre history
  3. Speech and Practical Projects

Principles of Drama

  • Drama as an art form distinct from other art forms
  • Dramatic form : tragedy, comedy, melodrama and farce
  • Three plays

Theatre History

  • Ritual
  • The Greek Theatre
  • Medieval Theatre
  • The Commedia dell’arte
  • Elizabethan Theatre
  • South African Theatre

Speech

  • The principles of speech
  • Relaxation
  • Breathing
  • Phonation
  • Resonance
  • Articulation
  • Accents
  • Attributes of speech
  • Correction of speech problems

Practical Work

  • Verbal Dynamics
  • Narrative techniques
  • Choral verse speaking
  • Movement, Creative Drama and Improvisation
  • Mime

A two hour written examination is written in June and November.

Practical work and written work are equally weighted.

Educational Drama does not necessarily involve teaching students how to act.  It is concerned with opportunities for invention and expression; with understanding of human situations and behaviour through movement and speech; with a bringing to life – in a way that adds to personal experience, of much that has been merely imparted information.


ASSESSMENT

Drama assessment is 50% practical work and 50% theory or written work.  There will be both a written and practical exam in June and at the end of each year, as well as continuous assessment throughout the year.  The theory aspect of drama calls on many of the same language and interpretation skills that the subjects English and History do.

The written exam will consist primarily of contextual type questions, which are based on the play texts studied throughout the term.  Students will be expected to apply their knowledge of the Principles of Speech, Theatre History, Staging etc to the text.

The practical exam will be a combination of individual and group performance pieces, which will need considerable rehearsal time.  Pupils wishing to take Drama must bear in mind that much of the practical rehearsal time will have to be done after school and over weekends.  An inability to commit to after school rehearsals will not only negatively affect your marks but also those whose group you are in.

The continuous assessment marks may be taken from a variety of exercises including research projects, acting individually or with a group, essay writing, movement / dance work, costume design and much more.

Speech and Drama is a creative subject, which requires much self-discipline and the ability to work well in a group context, without becoming distracted by the process.