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Alston Drive, Bradwell
Abbey, MK13 9AP
Tel: +44[0]1908 227229
information@mkcdc.org.uk

 


Home > Education > Schools > History

 

Historical drama

These sessions are highly interactive and involve script work, devising performance pieces and performing. Basic skills in all these areas are given, however a willingness to partake is essential.

The day comprises of three sessions:

  1. Exploring core material
  2. Rehearsing
  3. Performing

 

There is a maximum limit of 35 students on our Historical Drama days. Please wear clothing which is easy to move around in.

 

Roman Theatre

Discover what entertained the Romans, including; Comedies, Tragedies, and Gladiators.

Using masks and chorus work, circus skills and mime create your own Roman festival, and retell some of the ancient stories of Rome.

 

  1. Presentation and workshop looking at Roman amphitheatres and in particular the local St Albans remains. What sort of entertainment went on and when these performance would happen. Types of performers and the plays/stories they watched. How the audience reacted.
  2. Warm-up, drama game. Split group in two; give each group a different story for them to rehearse using different styles of roman theatre.
  3. Get into costume, one last rehearsal, and then perform to each other. Get changed, Q&A

 

Beowulf

Looking at the use of verse, riddles and kennings, these sessions build pupils confidence to encourage them to create and retell their own versions of the epic tale of heroes and monsters.

These sessions can be useful in development of descriptive language, and story construction.

 

  1. Presentation on Anglo Saxon literature and other stories, use of kennings and riddles. Tell the story of Beowulf.
  2. Warm-up, drama game. Put into two group; Grendel and dragon, and then split those groups again into three (B, M, E) each group needs to look at their section of the story and create kennings and riddles to tell their own version of it.
  3. Get into costume; show the pieces to each other. Cool down game.

 

Mummers

Traditionally mummers were townsfolk performing at community and religious festivals, later they became more political. Filled with stock characters, mummer plays were a forerunner of the pantomime. Pupils get the chance to create, devise and perform their own plays in the traditional style.

 

  1. Presentation looking at who mummers were, why mummering became popular, types of stock characters and performance style, as well as popular stories. Discuss what characters and stories might be used if done today.
  2. Warm-up, drama game. Put in group of no more than 6, based on discussion of previous session get the students to devise and rehearse their plays.
  3. Get into costume. Dress rehearsal. Show pieces to group.

 

Canterbury Tales

Famous for including people of all classes, and being the first large text in English to use rhyme, the Canterbury tales can support learning in Medieval class systems.

This workshop focuses on exploration of storytelling, poetry and performance to gain a better understanding of medieval society.

 

  1. Presentation on The Canterbury Tales, the social and religious backdrop of the time, and the stock characters that appear and how they reflected different social classes. A look at the different stories.
  2. Warm-up, drama game. Split class into group and give each one a different story for them to work with and rehearse.
  3. Get into costume. Perform pieces.

 

 Shakespeare

You can choose to work with excerpts of either:

Midsummers Night Dream

Or

The Tempest

These sessions looks at understanding the text, taking it from page to stage, looking at dynamics and status within the text.

 

  1. Presentation looking at Shakespeare, the society around him. A look at the play, its characters and the context. Discuss the context in our time. Using selected pieces of the plays look at what is going on in each scene, and what the characters and playwright is trying to convey.
  2. Warm-up, drama game. Split class up into groups to work with sections of the script. Let them explore their own meanings, get them to translate into modern English and show each other. With this new knowledge go back to original text and rehearse it.
  3. Get into costume (and weather permitting use the grounds) perform pieces.

 

Story-making

Develop memory, communication skills, confidence and creative thinking in this workshop that looks at creating stories and can focus on storytelling or Story-writing. Storytelling has been proven to strengthen literacy skills, and is especially engaging for special educational needs students.