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Creative & Performing Arts

Fostering a passion for the arts.

The Creative Arts Department sets out to develop our students’ passion for thinking and expressing themselves with experimentation, imagination and courage. We offer a learning environment that fosters problem solving, risk taking, self-expression and ‘happy accidents’.

Through our carefully designed schemes of work that allow students to succeed and develop confidence in their skills, they are introduced to experimental mark making, printing and clay work. The experience becomes more tailored to each student as they progress through GCSE and A level, when student will create their own projects and the Art teachers, who between them have a wide range of skills, facilitate and support their work.

We offer specialisms in Fine Art, Photography and Textiles. Our facilities include a photography studio and Photoshop editing facilities and a large range of textiles equipment from sewing machines to felt making and looms. From September the creative art facilities at our AW6 campus are being fully refurbished and added to with a new Fine Art, Photography and Textiles Studio and a dark room.

Music

Inclusivity is at the core of our Music programme at Akeley, whether it be in the classroom, during our extra-curricular activities or through our extensive instrumental and voice tuition programme. We place value in the way in which Music educates, inspires and allows our students to enjoy and flourish. Our curriculum gives students the opportunity to perform, compose and listen to music working collaboratively together and independently as we harness the benefits of music to create well-rounded and confident individuals.

Music facilities.

The Music Department has fully equipped facilities for teaching, rehearsing and performing in. We offer a range of vocal and instrumental extra-curricular ensembles which are formed based on the talents and interests of our current cohort. Students also benefit from individual music practice rooms and modern recording studio facilities at the school.

Competition & Workshops

To inspire the students and acknowledge Art in our society, we invite practising artists to run workshops on a variety of themes. We make regular museum and gallery visits in London, Oxford and Birmingham to enhance projects and make them more relevant. Our GCSE includes a visit to Kew Gardens and nearby Compton Verney.

In recent years we have submitted our students’ work to local and national competitions where we have had great success, and in 2021 we were shortlisted for Innovation and Excellence in Fine Arts by the ISA. We round off the school year with a great celebration of the students’ creations in a big summer exhibition. We aim to give everyone the skills to express themselves creatively.

Drama

The Drama Department

This is a vibrant and popular place, sitting right at the heart of the school. Drama is taught in all years and offers a place for pupils to explore, experience and examine emotions and feelings, through work studied and devised within the safe boundaries of the classroom and Drama Studio.

Our curriculum is designed to help pupils prepare for life, examining intellectual, physical, social and emotional issues through role-play, text and improvisation. Students receive a vocational education with many transferable skills for future careers in theatre and beyond. The Drama Department aims to be a unifying force within the school, motivating pupils of different age groups via public performance.

Senior School

During lessons pupils in Years 7-9 follow a lively programme of study which includes diverse theatre genres, scripts from differing time periods and a solid grounding in performance techniques. At GCSE we study the AQA Drama specification, and at A level we study the AQA Theatre Studies specification. We also offer sessions to prepare for LAMDA.

Co-Curricular

Drama extends into co-curricular clubs and the annual Senior School Musical, open to all years and one of the much-anticipated school events where the Drama and Music Departments come together. Recent performances have included Chicago and Bugsy Malone. The Summer Showcase provides the GCSE and A level pupils with a very important opportunity to perform their exam work to their parents, friends and teachers. We regularly visit local theatres to watch a variety of performances and take a residential trip to London to watch the most highly acclaimed shows.

Performances

Throughout the year we have a programme of performance opportunities for our students, including our bi-annual musical production where the Drama and Music Departments come together – recent performances have included Bugsy Malone and Little Shop of Horrors. We focus on more traditional pieces for the Carol Service and the Musician of the Year competition inspires our solo star performers. For rock and pop lovers, our musical year culminates in our much-loved festival Akeley Woodfest, showcasing our many school bands and ending the year with a bang. There is something for everyone here.