These e-newsletters were sent to provide resources during the Coronavirus lockdown

National Drama

Here to help in the months ahead

A message from the Chair

We are here to help.

One Forum, Many Voices.

Together we will get through this difficult time.

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Hi Colleagues!

As drama and theatre educators, we teach about being resourceful, resilient, empathetic, creative, practical, critical thinkers and problem solvers. We learn by doing.

That said, many of us are struggling with the very sudden departure of some of our students, many of whom we are unlikely to see again. And we share the uncertainties of how our profession will operate under the current circumstances. How do we self isolate and also work in our schools? How do we manage work levels when we are expected to continue setting lessons and monitoring progress, at the same time as looking after our own personal responsibilites?  Alongside our theatre industry colleagues, we are all in a muddle about what to do.


Your colleagues within National Drama understand the challenges you face and we are here to help.

We have begun to gather resources to alleviate some of your pressures on lesson planning and other school matters, and we will continue to add to this bank. We are inviting members and friends to help with this so we can all contribute. Have you got a research pack, handout, plan or quiz that would help a colleague? Join in and share work you are developing for your learners. We are also hosting competitions and running projects which we hope will motivate your students to engage creatively. If you have brilliant ideas please do get in
We have proposed some ideas to our Patrons and they are also very keen to be involved.

As we settle into a new way of living and working, let’s focus on asserting our creativity. Let’s inspire our young people, and each other, so that we all have something to celebrate during, and after, this crisis.

RESOURCES and LINKS to assist with distance learning.

Keep your distance – ‘Play A-Part’

National Drama

This is not an exhaustive list and we will keep updating.

Please quality assure BEFORE sharing with your students.

Play A-Part

Play A-Part – games, vocal exercises, improvs, tongue twisters, especially for playing apart, whilst in the same space (with more to come).

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Theatre Resources for Isolation

Theatre Resources for Isolation – lots of links to online resources complied by Ollie Jones from University of York.

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Prospero Digital

Prospero Digital –  an online platform that enables you to plan, author and share creative interactive learning resources.

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Get into Theatre

Get into Theatre – make sure all your students register so they can learn about access routes into the industry and see creatives at work.

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Burts Drama

Burts Drama for online learning – lots of accessible ideas for lessons.

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Splendid Productions

Splendid Productions extends access to its collection of filmed performances available to stream online at vimeo.com. FREE to those who bought DVDS. Other offers available. 

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National Theatre

The new National Theatre Collection makes the best of British Theatre available worldwide to libraries, schools, universities and the wider education sector. Their unique collection presents high quality recordings of world-class productions, giving you the best seats in the house whenever you want.

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A collection of links to fabulous live theatre experiences, compiled by Liz Segal.

PLEASE vet for age appropriateness.

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Globe Player

FREE content from MyGlobePlayer

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The Council for Subject Associations

We met, via ‘gotomymeeting’, with our colleagues in the CfSA to share ideas and forge collaborations that will assist our educational community, from students to teachers and all those who are at home struggling to keep their children and young people engaged. There is a wealth of expertise in the CfSA and we are all here to help.

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Do send ideas for drama teaching and learning, and we will aim to collate everything and keep updating. And DO ask us for help.

SPECIAL REQUEST: If you are a UK School or Organisation Member ALL your Drama colleagues are part of your membership. Please supply us with the names and emails of any colleagues in your organisation who would also like to receive these emails as part of your membership. Just click Add Members. We want to ensure EVERYONE gets these newsletters directly.

I truly feel we are moving into a period of immense creativity.

Let’s practise what we teach. Be resourceful; share ideas; encourage others; use our imaginations and CREATE, CREATE, CREATE.

We wish you and your families the best of health.

Aine Lark FRSA

Chair of National Drama

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Motivational Monday

Free resources

Welcome back everyone.

How life has changed in the few months since my last newsletter; we are now cast into a surreal world. At National Drama we know the anxieties and stresses that this change of lifestyle has made so we are creating and collecting resources, ideas and materials to support you through such difficult times. (See below for the details). We hope they will be useful.

We encourage you to take a look at our ‘Covid Strategy for members and non-members’. We are all volunteers at National Drama. If you have time and would like to volunteer alongside us, in any capacity, please do get in touch. There is much to be done and the more hands we have on deck, the better.

A huge ‘Thank You’ is extended to all those who have shared resources so freely and have worked creatively to lighten our load and brighten our days. We hope you have seen our ‘shout outs’ on Facebook and Twitter.

Please add to our resources collection and help others by contacting us here.

Stay safe and well everyone.

Vivienne Lafferty

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National Drama

Resources on Website – Play A-Part

– including fun quizzes to test your theatre knowledge from long standing member, Professor Andy Kempe

Resources in Googledrive

– including popular and accessible scripts from children’s playwright, David Lawson Lean

Resources from London Drama

Our Partners in London Drama have also been extremely busy creating and gathering resources for teachers and students. Check out their website and shared areas. Also feel free to share your resources on the LD platforms.

“Classroom support at anxious times”-  from Peter O’Connor

Peter is a staunch supporter and a long-time member of National Drama. Based in New Zealand, Professor O’Connor is an internationally recognised expert in applied theatre and drama education. Explore his approaches here

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National Theatre Live

Continuing with their exceptionally generous sharing of fantastic theatre, the NT presents breath-taking productions of  Frankensteiand Antony &
. Check out the excellent resources for students also.

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Gecko Theatre

GeckoTheatre is broadcasting Institute for free online for the first time ever. This captivating production will bring physical theatre to your living room. Join Gecko on Wednesday 27th April at 7pm

Check out the Q&A with Artistic Director, Amit Lahav.

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Pilot Theatre Company

Unable to continue touring with Crongton Knights, Pilot Theatre Company will be showing a full, free webcast of the production from Wed 22 April – Sat 9 May. This will be accompanied by a range of free talks, workshops and Q&A sessions with the creatives and teams behind Pilot’s work. You can find more information on the Pilot Connects page.

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My Globe Player

The recent anniversary of Shakespeare’s birthday on 23rd April marked the start of the RSC showing past productions free on BBC iPlayer. Forthcoming plays are: Macbeth, Hamlet, Romeo and Juliet, Much Ado About Nothing, Othello and The Merchant of Venice.  Further information on the Royal Shakespeare Company’s website.  

(Photo: The Globe Theatre. Taken last summer when the world was a different place. VL)

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Hampstead Theatre Club

The Arrest of Ai Weiwei (2013) will be available to watch on-demand from Monday 27 April, 10am – Sunday 3 May, 10pm (BST).  The production tells the story of the controversial arrest and imprisonment of Chinese Artist Ai Weiwei in 2011 and is based on conversations between Ai Weiwei and journalist/writer Barnaby Martin (Hanging Man: The Arrest of Ai Weiwei), in which Ai Weiwei spoke about what happened during his disappearance.  Directed by James Macdonald, #AIWW:

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Free to watch from the comfort of your own home.

Wolves are Coming for You by Joel Horwood originally toured the UK in Autumn 2017 and was co-produced with the Everyman Theatre Cheltenham. This recording was made at Clows Top Victory Hall, Worcestershire.

You can find out more about the original production here.

Pentabus shows will remain live for the next three months and will be released weekly, on a Friday, at 2pm, for anyone to access. More details here.

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The Shows Must Go On

Enjoy the musical genius of Andrew Lloyd Webber every Friday from 7pm. Be quick though as the shows only run for 48 hours, and once they’re gone they’re gone! 

(Photo from ES. London Inside – read full article here)

BBC Radio 4 – Front Row

Arts Minister Caroline Dinenage answers questions from the industry about the Coronavirus crisis. Paapa Essiedu performs Hamlet, Turning personal tragedies into comedy.

Paapa Essiedu, Arts Minister Caroline Dinenage, Turning our tragedies into comedy.

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Fourth-Wall: Playwrights in Lockdown

Dan Rebellato, Professor of Contemporary Theatre at the Royal Holloway University of London, has been remotely interviewing playwrights ‘to pass the time’ and is now on his ‘Season 2’. Here are the latest links to some wonderfully insightful interviews which will be relevant for a long time to come. Such a great initiative!

James Graham
Laura Wade
Roy Williams
Simon Stephens
Chris Goode
Lucy Prebble

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National Drama

Your chance to WRITE for DRAMA – National Drama’s Magazine

We have extended the deadline for submissions for our July 2020 publication to the 31st May. We appreciate everyone is adjusting to new situations and finding new rhythms in daily routines. Perhaps you want to tell us about some excellent drama lessons you have delivered, either remotely or in a school setting, where you successfully accommodated social distancing regulations? How did that impact your lessons? Let’s celebrate how you and your students creatively adapted.

Maybe you have seized the opportunity to indulge in the wonderful theatre productions and other initiatives streaming into our homes? How different is this from the live experiences?

Have your students risen to creative challenges and pleasantly surprised you? Tell us about them.

Remember, National Drama’s magazine, Drama, is a high quality professional publication which has national and international readership.

Articles can vary from 1000 – 4000 words, and are welcomed from new and experienced practitioners and writers.

For full contributor information click here.

If you would like to discuss the contribution you wish to make, please contact National Drama Publications, and we will be happy to assist.

We look forward to hearing from you.

National Drama is a UK registered charity no: 1173215


Mousetrap’s Every Home a Theatre e-newsletter

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Shakespeare with Puppets and Mousetrap Monologue Slam

Great ideas for #EveryHomeATheatre

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Shakespeare’s Puppet Pandemonium!

How to make Shakespeare more fun? Turn him into a puppet! Let the Bard’s timeless stories and characters fuel your students’ creativity – and their silliness! Turn your favourite Shakespeare scenes into mini puppet shows, using any puppets you have on hand or some you’ve made yourself (Marion will show you how in the video here). The only rules are: it has to be Shakespeare, and there has to be puppets!

Remember to share your/your students’ videos with Mousetrap Theatre Projects on social media using the hashtag #EveryHomeATheatre to be in with a chance of winning theatre tickets!


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Introducing the Mousetrap Monologue Slam!

It’s time for your students to seize their stage and show the world what they’ve got!

Please share our Mousetrap Monologue Slam with your A-Level and GCSE drama students! They can perform their favourite monologue from a play or film of their choosing – budding playwrights can even perform one of their own. They (or you) can share their performance with Mousetrap Theatre Projects on social media using the hashtag #MousetrapMonologueSlam any time between today and Friday 8th May.

We are delighted to announce that our winner will learn from the best – with an exclusive, once-in-a-lifetime prize package from renowned actor training company, Fourth Monkey!
The prize package will include:

– A free place on an upcoming Fourth Monkey Taster Workshop

– A pair of free tickets to an upcoming performance of Shakespeare’s Richard II by Fourth Monkey’s Class of 2020 graduating company

– A ‘backstage’ tour for a chance to meet the cast/students and ask them about their experiences at drama school, their training with Fourth Monkey and anything else they might be curious about (within reason!)

– A one-on-one audition speech coaching and guidance session to help prepare for drama school, with Fourth Monkey’s CEO and Artistic Director, Steve Green 

Need some inspiration? Our good friend Eddie Redmayne has kindly shared his top 5 tips for performing a monologue! Read them on our website.


National Drama

Wednesday 6th May is Quiz Night!

Don’t forget to sign up for Mousetrap’s theatre quiz, especially for teachers, on Wednesday 6th May! It will be hosted on Zoom. You can form a team with your family or fellow teachers (max. 6 people).

The quiz will start at 8pm and will last about 1.5 hours.

RSVP to Patrick on patrick@mousetrap.org.uk before Monday 4th May to receive the Zoom ID. If you’re forming a team with people who aren’t in your household, tell Patrick their names so we can make sure you’re all in the same team!

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National Drama is a UK registered charity no. 1173215

Here is the guidance from Ofqual

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Ofqual Guidance for Grading of Exams 

Can we help you? 

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Hi !

‘Summer 2020 Grading of Exams’ – can we help you?

So, by now, you will have seen the guidance from Ofqual advising us how to grade our students at GCSE, AS and A Level. We await information regarding vocational qualifications.

How are you feeling about the processes proposed? Will you find the grading fairly straightforward or do you have concerns about how to approach it? Are you an experienced teacher or newly qualified? Perhaps you are in a ‘one-person’ department and need to chat with another drama colleague?

We are here to listen and help.

At National Drama, we are conscious of the pressures that teachers are under right now. We are key workers and many of us have significant responsibilities beyond the classroom. 

Be assured that your colleagues at ND are here to help. If we can be of any assistance, do feel free to get in touch. You might even just want to let off some steam. You can email the executive panel here or chat with us on Facebook and Twitter

We are networked with multiple agencies, theatre practitioners and drama educators, so can reach out to others for you too. 

Thank you for continuing to be great drama teachers.

And thanks to everyone who has sent resources / ideas so we can ‘Play A-Part’. 

Stay safe, stay well, stay connected. 

From all at the ND Team

National Drama

National Drama is a UK registered charity no. 1173215

Resources from Pilot Theatre

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Free Resources from Pilot Theatre

You won’t want to miss this!

National Drama

FREE EDUCATION RESOURCES FROM PILOT THEATRE, including webcast of Crongton Knights; Q&A with Artistic Director – Esther Richardson; Q&A with Author – Alex Wheatle; lesson ideas to help students and teachers prepare for GCSE and A’ Level devised and live theatre exams. 

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LIVE Q&A with Esther Richardson & Carolyn Bradley

On Tuesday, 5th May (3pm – 4pm), Pilot Theatre is hosting a special webinar, directly aimed at Drama Teachers, offering help and advice on teaching Crongton Knights to GCSE or A Level students, as a live theatre production or as a devising stimulus. It will be a great opportunity for teachers to have their questions about the production answered, from a creative or educational perspective.

Esther Richardson is the Artistic Director of Pilot Theatre; Carolyn Bradley is a Drama teacher, examiner and Pilot’s Education Consultant.

Sign up for the Q&A here.

Crongton Knights

“Crongton Knights is a refreshing example of what theatre for older children should be….Pilot Theatre strikes again.” Reviews Hub

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National Drama

The Crongton Knights are back! As the magnificent six from Crongton Knights can no longer be out on the road, they will now be touring directly to you.

Their final tour venue would have been Theatre Peckham from 22nd April – 9th May so, for these dates, they will be hosting a webcast of their production Crongton Knights, completely free to access.

The webcast features a special introduction from writers Alex Wheatle and Emteaz Hussain along with directors Esther Richardson and Corey Campbell. The video will be online until Sat 9th May.

Join in for an epic beatboxing, bike riding adventure and let Pilot Theatre know you’re watching by using #CrongtonKnights on Twitter and Instagram.

Link to watch webcast

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Q&A with Crongton Knights Author, Alex Wheatle, hosted by Esther Richardson

Join Alex and Esther on: Thursday 7th May, 2pm – 3pm.

This is a great opportunity to hear the talented and inspirational Alex Wheatle in conversation with Pilot’s Artistic Director, Esther Richardson.

Alex Wheatle is the best-selling author of several books including the modern classic Brixton Rock, and the multi-award winning Crongton series.

Register here.

Pilot Connects

Weekly sessions, so watch this space!

Pilot Connects is a series of talks, workshops and Q&A sessions with the creatives and teams behind Pilot’s work. Open to all and lasting up to an hour, they want to open the doors of their company – online. For all aspiring creatives, beatboxers, those itching to adapt for the stage or those interested in the world of immersive tech and theatre, the online sessions will be announced weekly and free to access.

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National Drama is a UK registered charity no: 1173215


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