The annual Royal Shakespeare Company Residency has once again come to Dulwich Zhuhai's drama classes. This programme is a collaboration between EiM and the Royal Shakespeare Company Learning and is part of this year's Dulwich International School family-wide "Worldwise Event".

From March 4th to 8th , Mr Peter Bradley, Deputy Director of the Royal Shakespeare Company (RSC) came to Dulwich Zhuhai to conduct a learning workshop.

The RSC being one of, if not the biggest theatre company in the world for performing William Shakespeare’s plays, alongside other plays. During his week stay at Dulwich Zhuhai, Peter worked with the Year 10 IGCSE Drama students. These students engaged in several workshops led by Peter, where they learnt different rehearsal and performance techniques used by the RSC when they are rehearsing for full scale productions.

(Left:Mr Moon,Right:Peter Bradley)

"Ghosts" Actor

Towards the end of the event, the students put on a fantastic performance for staff and students on the Edward Allen stage last week. The performance featured extracts from plays that they had explored with Mr. Bradley over the course of the week, using a variety of RSC drama techniques that they had learnt in class. These sections were taken from several plays, these being from a modern play called ‘Snow in Midsummer’ by Frances Ya-Chu Cowhig, first performed by the RSC in 2017, as well as sections from plays by the bard himself, Shakespeare, these being ‘Hamlet’ and ‘Romeo & Juliet’.

One of the plays the students were introduced to for the first time was ‘Snow in Midsummer’. This play was based on the Chinese folktale ‘The Injustice to Dou E’, which both embodies the colours of ancient Chinese literature and has strong echoes of Shakespeare's plays.

Mr Bradley and Mr Moon, Head of Drama, decided to use 'Snow in Midsummer' partly because of the Chinese links within the play.Some of these links are that both The Midsummer Night's Dream and Hamlet feature a ghost who, because of death, remains in its place and seeks justice or revenge. The students explored the nature of ghosts and how they could be represented on stage.

Watching the students work with Peter was an absolute pleasure, seeing how they all engaged with the different activities, exercises and scripts. The level of engagement and enjoyment throughout was outstanding and the students created a showcase that they should be really proud of. The fact that they created a showcase performance over the course of a week, and then presented it to an audience in our theatre, was the first time some of these students had performed on stage. It's an incredible achievement! 

For me, it was a privilege not only to see the students working with Peter, but also to work with and learn from him on a professional level. The techniques, exercises and advice that Peter provided were invaluable to me and I have no doubt that I will take these back with me and use them to great effect in my own teaching.

- Head of Drama, Mr Moon