Drama & Theatre Studies

'The drama department celebrated their debut at the Edinburgh Fringe and Dame Judi Dench is one of the glitterati supporting the school's annual arts festival.' - Tatler Schools Guide 2019

It has been said in the past that ‘theatre is one of the best team games ever’. At Rugby it is our intention to continue that tradition of teamwork and discipline and to stretch the creative abilities of both students and audiences as far as possible.

To that end we commit to two ‘big’ productions in the year – one a musical, the other a play. In alternate years we will endeavour to put on a major musical or play, and a minor play or musical. This allows us to have one main production in the year where we can push the boat out and try to put on as professional a production as possible. As a consequence, each student in their School career has the opportunity to take part in a large cast, large scale production which caters for everyone’s particular forte - be it singing, playing in the accompanying orchestra or ‘straight’ acting in a play.

It is of course also essential that an equal importance is put on the technical and back-stage areas to allow those who are less extrovert the possibility of being involved in such experiences. directing, stage managing, lighting, sound, costume, make-up, set design and construction, choreography, props, are all areas just as essential as ‘treading the boards’ and we endeavour to make students fully realise the importance of their vital contribution to the overall success of the performance.

However, it is important to realise that not all productions need to be big-scale extravaganzas. House plays continue to be important evenings in the social calendar. Each House has the opportunity to put on a House play in either the Macready Theatre, OBS, the TSR, the New Music Rooms or the Atrium in the Science Schools.

Should we have students interested in staging their own work, then the foyer of the Macready Theatre is developing into a versatile and important venue for such productions.

At the end of the School year, we have our Arts Festival where ‘anything goes’. Have an idea, find a venue, we will put in what technical requirements are needed and away you go! Apart from the afore-mentioned venues, productions have taken place in Old Quad, New Quad, the Memorial Chapel, the main Chapel, the rackets courts, The Lewis Gallery the Foxcroft Lecture Theatre, as well as outside on The Close.