A very important part of the Emanuel ethos is the seamless integration of the academic and co-curricular programmes. We believe pupils learn just as much on stage or out on the playing fields as they do in the classroom. It’s all about dedication, teamwork, reliability, motivation and leadership.
We encourage all pupils to take part in our rich programme of co-curricular events and activities. Sport, music, art and drama all find their place in the academic curriculum but also take place before, during and after school, in lunchtimes, at weekends and in the holidays. There are all sorts of trips and excursions throughout the year and more than 50 different clubs and societies. All pupils will find something to interest them and develop a passion for, whether it be debating, rock climbing or pyrotechnics!
All pupils will find something to interest them and develop a passion for, whether it be debating, rock climbing or pyrotechnics!
John Layng, Assistant Head, Co-curricular
The Drama Department runs an active and extensive programme throughout the year, with productions for all ages, including an annual school musical and several plays and residencies. Students are introduced to drama in weekly lessons, but can extend this by attending a range of clubs, such as Drama Club, Technical Theatre Club and Costume Club. We also run fortnightly development workshops for our Drama Scholars.
Students are encouraged to pursue a passion for the theatre, both on stage and as directors, playwrights and designers, in our purpose-built teaching space; The Fiennes Theatre, which was opened in 2013 by Mike Leigh and Ralph Fiennes. The House Drama Competition and ‘Play in A Week’ project allow opportunities to take the lead on developing student productions. We are fortunate to work alongside professional theatre companies, such as ‘Frantic Assembly’, to offer holiday residencies and skills programmes and we regularly take performance work to the Edinburgh Festival Fringe. All performances at Emanuel are fully operated by a large student technical team, instructed by our full-time Theatre Technician.
The department takes pride in presenting plays from a range of theatrical styles, from classics such as ‘The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe’ to contemporary drama such as ‘Success’ by Nick Drake. Our recent productions include ‘The Love of the Nightingale’, ‘Brief Encounter’, ‘The Witches’, ‘The Shakespeare Revue’, ‘The Jungle Book’ and ‘The Suitcase Kid’.
Many of our students have professional acting experience, appearing in BBC productions and in the West End and others go on to study at some of the country’s top Drama Schools, such as LAMDA, ArtsEd and E15, or to read drama at university.
In our vibrant music department we run more than 30 ensembles of all sizes from large choirs to string quartets. We have jazz groups, rock bands and orchestras of all shapes and sizes. The chapel choir sing at the daily services in the school chapel and regularly at St Paul’s, Westminster Abbey, Southwark Cathedral and regional cathedrals such as Chichester. They go on annual tours to countries such as Malta, Slovenia and Finland.
We have master classes and workshops, vocal coaching with Voces8 and visits to opera and concerts. We participate in festivals and competitions and enjoy community outreach in local hospitals and churches. Our top students regularly read music at university, win choral scholarships to Oxbridge and participate in our foremost national choirs and orchestras as well as entering the profession as instrumentalists and singers.