Drama is taught as part of the School curriculum to all boys from Reception up to Year 5, but also as an extra-curricular activity. The School has staged a wide variety of productions, ranging from the toe-tapping, splurge firing musical ‘Bugsy’ to everyone’s favourite, ‘Joseph’, and from the allegorical ‘Lord of the Flies’ to the neon-fuelled ‘Return to the Forbidden Planet’. In short, there is something for every taste and palette. Drama plays an important part in the wider curriculum at St John’s: there will always be a large cohort of boys who relish the opportunity to perform in public, but equally there will be those who initially lack the confidence to step forward and participate in such opportunities. At St John’s we emphasise the importance of everyone taking part, in whatever way possible, and consequently the less confident boys gain a great deal by taking a risk and throwing themselves into the productions.
In March 2015 the boys and staff staged a tremendous production of ‘Oliver’ with 2 casts, both of whom told the story with great sensitivity and humour. Unusually, because of term dates, we had only 7 weeks to complete the production from beginning to end and it showed once again how adaptable and open to a challenge the boys really are. They revelled in the hard work and long rehearsals and carried this right the way through to the final performances.
During curriculum lessons the boys’ focus is on LAMDA examinations and at least one public
performance per year. Class lessons are taught as part of the curriculum from Nursery and from Year 3, boys prepare for examinations in small groups. Individual lessons are also available by arrangement and these too are very popular. A number of drama scholarship to senior independent schools have been won in recent years.