This course is an exciting choice if you are interested in studying Dance in depth through the creation and performance of choreography, and the analysis of dance repertoire. You do not have to be pursuing a career in dance to take this course, and the skill-set gained from analysing dance repertoire, developing essay skills and taking the role of both a choreographer and performer in a practical setting provide a range of favourable skills for both employment and university. It should be stressed that this is an academic subject, with 50% of your time and assessment on practical, and 50% on written theory. The subject is not purely a practical one.
You do not need to have studied GCSE or BTEC Dance before, but having prior practical experience is essential. Practical is predominantly in the contemporary style, and students are required to already have competent technique in dance on admission. You should also make sure to attend the Wyke Start practical audition workshops in order to be accepted on the course.
A Level Dance requires you to achieve at least the minimum entry requirements for your chosen pathway. You will also be required to attend a short audition in the summer term.
Teaching staff in the dance department include Toni Knight (Head of Dance and Theory teacher) and Laura Bulless (Teacher of 1st and 2nd year practical), alongside extra-curricular teachers Julie Lovewell (Head of Dance at NAPA) and David Danville (founder of Skyline Studios). The department uses a rehearsal and performance space that has a fully sprung dance floor, mirrors, sound and lighting facilities. It has access to the college Library and classroom facilities as well as the state of the art College ICT facilities.
You will have four lessons a week which are split into 2 practical, 2 theory. Practical lessons are a mixture of technique and choreographic tasks. Theory lessons are split into the history of Rambert and in-depth analysis of ‘Rooster’ (Bruce, 1991). Extracurricular rehearsal time will be required in addition to timetabled lessons to produce and practice practical exam work.
PERFORMANCE AND CHOREOGRAPHY (50% OF A LEVEL)
CREATE A 2-3 MINUTE SOLO IN THE STYLE OF A FAMOUS CHOREOGRAPHER
The focus of this piece is to accurately reflect his choreographic style in terms of technical and physical skills, spatial elements, dynamics and interpretative performance skills such as musicality and projection.
PERFORMANCE WITHIN A JAZZ OR CONTEMPORARY
QUARTET OF 3-4 MINUTES
The focus of this piece is based on your physical and technical skills, spatial awareness, and interpretative performance in relation to the chosen genre of dance.
TAKE THE ROLE OF CHOREOGRAPHER FOR A 3-4 MINUTE GROUP PIECE
Create an original piece of choreography for 3-5 dancers in response to an externally set task. The question will take the form of a stimulus (poem, picture, sculpture, historical figure, etc.) which will need to be researched, developed and communicated in your choreography.
CRITICAL ENGAGEMENT (50% OF A LEVEL)
This is the theory part of the course, and includes both the detailed analysis of two dance works, and an understanding of other choreographers and repertoire that are influential within their corresponding areas of study:
The Set Work ‘Rooster’ (1991) by Christopher Bruce, and the contextual setting of the Rambert Dance Company (1966 – 2002)
The set work ‘Sutra’ (Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui, 2008) within the context of the Contemporary Dance Scene 2000+
TRIPS AND ENRICHMENT
In this enrichment, you will:
• Compete in a range of styles including contemporary, street/commercial, tap and ballet.
• Enter the ‘That’s Showbiz’ national competition.
• In 2019 were crowned national champions, beating 6000+ dancers from 200 dance schools. Wyke were the only sixth form college to compete; going against professional dance schools.
• Sessions are led by external coaches including Julie Lovewell (NAPA) and David Danville (Skyline)
Contemporary Dance Qualification
In this enrichment, you can complete one of the following qualifications:
• Grade 6 (£50), Inter-foundation (£65), Intermediate (£70)
• All of these courses carry UCAS points.
• During the programme you will study the following
• Warm Up Exercises, Barre Exercises, Floor and Standing Exercises, Set Amalgamations, Examiner’s dance and Student Choreography.
This enrichment will be put into your timetable for one session per week.
PREPARATION FOR THE COURSE
The department recommend that you attend one of our scheduled open events to learn more about this exciting course. We also recommend that you come along to your taster sessions within this subject at Wyke Start, our two-day taster event in July. You will also be given some summer work to complete following this event to help you prepare for your first few weeks on the course.
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