Drama and Theatre

Drama and Theatre

Departmental Aims

  • To stimulate and maintain lasting curiosity, interest and enjoyment in Drama and Theatre
  • To enable each student to achieve their potential in a variety of situations, using resources appropriately so as to ensure the highest level of achievement for each student
  • By exposing students to a wide range of stimuli we aim to enable them to see performance as:
    • A major cultural feature
    • Part of a wider body of knowledge and skills
    • Playing a crucial role in 21st century life
  • To enable students to be familiar with a body of knowledge, principles, skills, techniques and vocabulary related to Drama and Theatre
  • To enable students to develop a range of desirable personal qualities and transferable skills, such as safety awareness, courtesy, confidence, perseverance, resilience, concern for others, initiative, independence and imagination
  • To provide further enrichment of our subject by offering students the opportunity to be involved in a range of professional workshops, theatre trips and given industry knowledge to develop their understanding and awareness of Drama and Theatre.


We have comprehensive Performing Arts facilities including a 300-seat auditorium, a theatre workshop, a dance studio and two drama studios.

The Howard Hall is a large and flexible space which forms the centrepiece of the School’s Performing Arts area. It features:

  • Comprehensive lighting rig and sound system
  • Seating which can also be curtained off to create an atmospheric events area
  • An adjoining large scenery workshop, green room, prop and costume store and dressing facilities.

Drama Room 1 adjoins the Howard Hall and the Music Faculty. This large studio is used for classroom drama, dance lessons and rehearsals and contains a comprehensive sound system, video projection facilities, a mirrored wall and ballet bar.

Drama Room 2 and The Studio are smaller ‘black box’ spaces used for classroom drama from Years 7-13. They contain lighting facilities, and up-to-date projection and sound systems.

Speech and Drama is taught at School House. Several teaching rooms are available here, as well as a small library of playscripts.

Technical and administrative support is led by our theatre manager who oversees all our productions.

A Level Curriculum

We follow the AQA A Level Drama and Theatre course.

Students following this course should:

  • Be encouraged to develop their interest in and enjoyment of Drama and Theatre, both through experience as audience members and through the development of dramatic and theatrical skills as appropriate to their own practice
  • Be encouraged to develop their knowledge and understanding of the social and historical contexts of Drama and Theatre, through detailed study of dramatic texts, in their context, and the work of prescribed theatre practitioners
  • Develop their ability to respond critically and sensitively to a range of drama texts and theatre in performance through studying and attending theatrical performances of drama written in different periods, in different styles and with different aims
  • Develop as confident and independent interpreters of drama and theatre
  • Acquire and apply appropriate terminology
  • Recognise the importance of both discipline and co-operation within practical drama and acquire practical theatre skills as appropriate to their own dramatic intentions.

In the A Level course students should broaden and deepen the knowledge, skills and understanding acquired at GCSE. They should be able to make connections between different theatre practices and dramatic forms, and to comment analytically on their significance. They should be able to appreciate different styles of drama and approaches to theatre and apply these appropriately. At A Level there is an increased demand on students to use their independent study time to carry out in-depth research and reflection on their work.

Co-curricular, Enrichment, Extension and Support

The Performance Arts Faculty at BMS has a long-standing tradition of providing students with an array of unrivalled exciting and challenging opportunities. Students will have the chance to take part in:

  • School productions – We produce school productions for the Junior and Senior Schools in which students have the chance to perform in the school theatre. Recent shows have included Sister Act, Our Country’s Good, Wind in the Willows and Made in Dagenham!
  • ACT! – Bedford Modern School hosts Bedford’s Schools Drama Festival. Schools from across the county come together to create and perform an evening of devised drama
  • Theatre in Transit – Our exclusive Sixth Form theatre company, delivering a wide range of thought-provoking and challenging productions. Recent plays include An Ideal Husband, Yerma, Oh! What a Lovely War and The Caucasian Chalk Circle all performed at The Place in Bedford
  • Dance classes – These are offered to all years in Ballet, Tap, Modern, Jazz and Street Dance. The dance highlights of the year are the Dance Showcase and the House Dance Competition
  • Speech and Drama – Students will have the chance to attend private lessons to prepare for LAMDA exams and take part in the Bedfordshire Festival of Music, Speech and Drama as well as our own Speech and Drama Showcase
  • New York’s Broadway – Every other year we run a Sixth Form trip to the bright lights of New York – a wonderful experience designed specifically for Performance Arts students
  • Performance Programme – Students are invited to apply to be part of our bespoke Performance Programme in which successful candidates are offered specialist workshops and trips designed to inspire our most gifted students
  • Trips – There are also several trips to the theatre and workshops throughout the academic year.

All BMS students are encouraged to audition for the various productions and showcases throughout the year.