Parkside has a thriving and bustling Drama department with Drama taught throughout the school. The benefits for the children are tangible, supporting all areas of the children’s learning: collaboration, creativity, self-awareness, empathy, and more importantly, teaching them to break barriers and move beyond their comfort zones.
Every child has the opportunity to perform on stage each year in performances, including: Christmas concerts and plays, literary competitions, assemblies, Open Mornings and a variety of plays throughout the year. Day and evening trips to local theatres and West End performances all enhance the diverse experiences of Drama at Parkside.
Lessons are a kaleidoscope of creativity, where subject knowledge, improvisation, mime, prose and communication skills are explored and developed. Developing confidence through Drama is recognised as one of the many benefits for children. Working closely with the English department, the boys are given opportunities to develop their public speaking through debating, role-play, poetry recitals and class-based assemblies.
Parkside boys perform in a range of plays, musicals and nativities, which have recently included ‘Sound School’, an extraordinary original ‘Stomp’-like production, ‘Private Peaceful’, ‘The Lion King Jr.’, ‘Treasure Island’, ‘Macbeth’, ‘Hey Ewe!’ and ‘The Amazing Adventures of Superstan’.
The most recent production was Aladdin Jnr, which was a Parkside first! The production was rehearsed during lockdown (via Zoom), and performed simultaneously in the Performance Hall and Gym to socially distanced audiences.
Alongside Drama lessons and productions, pupils in Years 3 to 8 enjoy additional LAMDA sessions, which lead to a performance examination in ‘Communication: Speaking Verse and Prose’. Boys who participate, further develop their confidence, comprehension of poetry and prose, diction and performance skills. LAMDA at Parkside has proven to be hugely successful with a high rate of ‘Pass with Distinction’ grades awarded.
Furthermore, Drama scholarships are regularly awarded to boys leaving for their Senior Schools.
The Performance Hall, equipped with lighting, back drops and a custom sound system, provide the setting for the breadth of diverse and incredible performances each year. With 45 acres of beautiful grounds, the boys are lucky enough to be able to make the most of this natural stage.