Diversity in drama celebrated in 25th anniversary NISDA conference at The Perse
7 Jun 2018
A celebration of diversity provided the theme as The Perse School played host to the 25th anniversary conference of the National Independent Schools’ Drama Association.
Eighty-five delegates, including one from Singapore, attended The Perse for the three-day event to share ideas, boost their skills and knowledge, and find new ways of supporting, encouraging and empowering their students.
Drama teachers and heads of department from both the independent and state school sectors, as well as educational specialists and theatre practitioners, took part in a series of workshops throughout the conference.
Comic and musician Vikki Stone’s session ‘Comedy in the Classroom’ explored how teachers could develop original comedy writing and improvisation with their pupils, while playwright and teacher Alia Bano gave a workshop entitled ‘Making Waves in Ethnic Writing’.
Actress and voice-over artist Sarah Redmond led a class in ‘Finding your Voice’, focusing on how teachers can support pupils in finding and using their voices as well as providing teachers with the skills to maintain their own voices through voice preservation techniques.
Cornwall-based Kneehigh, who have gained a reputation as one of Britain’s most exciting touring theatre companies, gave a workshop in multi-disciplinary storytelling.
The creative learning team from Graeae – a theatre company featuring D/deaf and disabled actors – presented a session on ‘Reimagining Inclusive Practices’, looking at different ways of ensuring equal participation, while the Milk Presents company led a workshop on ‘Exploring Gender and Identity Through Drama’.
Perse Theatre Director in Residence Matt Hawksworth was proud the school had been able to hold the conference and pleased with how the event had gone.
He said: “The event was a chance for people to come together, support each other and help promote the wider creative arts industry. It was fantastic to welcome delegates from schools locally and nationally to the Peter Hall Performing Arts Centre.
“From the feedback we’ve received, the conference proved to be a huge success with teachers able to take lots of new ideas back to use in their classrooms.”