The Easter break began for a group of Year 9 and 10 English and Drama students with a fun-filled, cultural and sunny three days in Stratford-upon-Avon. After an early start and a traffic-free journey we arrived to a fantastic tour of the RSC Tower which offers 360 views over Stratford. This was a great opportunity to ask our knowledgeable guides questions and spot some lovely lunch spots!
That evening we watched ‘Anthony and Cleopatra’, a captivating tale of love, revenge and torment. It was a really powerful performance and Josette Simon was an inspiration in her role as Cleopatra.
After a good sleep, we headed over (in the sunshine) to Shakespeare’s birthplace and his house, The New Place. To be in surroundings steeped in such history was amazing, and we even had our own performer act out Shakespeare soliloquys at our request! The teachers particularly relished in the opportunity to do a little Shakespearian themed dressing up too! Following this, the students took part in an RSC drama workshop with the Assistant Director of the show we had seen the previous night. This really brought the play alive for the pupils.
That night, we went on a spine-tingling ghost walk. This was for many, the highlight of the trip. Our guide certainly had a presence about him as he shared local tales of the plague and murder. Luckily no one had any nightmares!
Our final morning was April Fool’s Day and there had been some pranking – Miss Marshall woke up to a giraffe head mask and jokes taped to her door! However the teachers were able to get the pupils back by pretending the coach had broken down. Following this drama, we went back to the RSC for our backstage tour. This was a once in a life-time opportunity and something we will all remember. To be able to witness the technical rehearsal; see the costumes; learn about hair, make-up and wig making; visit the bridge and backstage with expert guides was a privilege.
This was a trip to remember and the pupils were excellent ambassadors for the school. Thanks to all involved.
As one student said: “I enjoyed every minute! I learnt a lot about Shakespeare and Elizabethan culture, as well as having fun with my friends.”