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BTEC in Performing Arts at Princes Risborough School

Course description

The course prepares students for employment in the performing arts. However students taking the subject may not wish to be performers. The confidence, organisational and communication skills gained are useful for a wide variety of careers, particularly people centred or managerial roles, whether in or beyond the performing arts field.

It is taught in a practical way, with students developing their skills as performers by putting theoretical concepts “on their feet” and experiencing them in practice. Various acting styles and rehearsal techniques will be taught and applied to performance work. Learning how to improvise, respond to stimuli and devise a piece of drama work will be covered.

The course involves the exploration of play texts and how to communicate the meaning through good vocal and physical acting skills. Written evidence of understanding is required, usually in the form of a reflective actor’s log evaluation of the students’ contribution to and understanding of each unit of study. Above all the course is creative, exciting and fun!


The course can be taken as a single A Level equivalent or extended to a two A Level equivalent. Performing Arts 2 therefore can only be taken with Performing Arts 1.

Performing Arts 1: BTEC Level 3 Subsidiary Diploma in Performing Arts (Acting) Consists of 2 mandatory units: Unit 19: Principles of Acting and Unit 7: Performing to an Audience, plus 4 specialist units.

Performing Arts 2: BTEC Level 3 Diploma in Performing Arts (Acting) Consists of a further 2 mandatory units: Unit 1: Performance Workshop and Unit 3: Performing Arts Business, plus 4 specialist units.

Specialist units are tailored to suit the group and may include: Unit 21: Drama Improvisation Unit 9: Devising plays Unit 10: Theatre in Education Unit 16: Performing with Masks Unit 32: Developing Physical Theatre

Entry requirements

It is very useful, although not essential, to have completed a Level 2 GCSE or BTEC First Drama qualification. Students should be confident, able to work well with others and have a genuine interest in a wide range of theatre. Good attendance is essential for successful completion of work as it is extremely difficult to catch up with the learning from a practical workshop. Students will be expected to attend rehearsals outside of lesson time and need to prioritise this over undertaking paid work or involvement in extra-curricular performances. Students must meet standard Sixth Form entry requirements (5 or more A*-C grade passes at GCSE including English Language and Mathematics).

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact Princes Risborough School directly.

Last updated date: 10 March 2015
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Key information

  • Start date: Next September
  • Duration: 2 years