Recommend a drama group?

(10 Posts)
Corriewatcher Tue 04-Mar-14 14:37:13

Hi there

At his teacher's suggestion, I'm trying to find a friendly, non-intimidating drama group for my 9 year old son to help build his confidence. He's quite shy, and hasn't really done much performing before.

There are a few drama groups near where I live, some local, some nationwide chains. Just wondering whether anyone had any experience of the larger chains, eg Stagecoach, Perform, Pauline Quirke Academy?

nonicknameseemsavailable Tue 04-Mar-14 22:27:16

I THINK a lot of the national chains are, at the end of the day, franchises so whether the one near you is good or not can't really be related to whether one 60 miles away is good or not.

My daughters do dancing and drama at a local dance/drama school and it works for them. they have a nice small group for drama and are learning techniques rather than working towards shows. I think drama can be taught in many different ways, none of which are necessarily better than the others. I think you would be best asking to observe a class at a few places in your price range and near enough to you and then go with which one seems a style that suits your child.

Stagecoach ime is very non-intimidating/inclusive (with opportunities to audition for more serious training if required - but the main classes aren't like that at all). Although see above comments about it being a franchise.

Also if you have a theatre near you check out whether they run any drama classes. They tend to be very inclusive - especially for the younger ones - and often a lot cheaper than the chains.

chauffeurmummy Wed 05-Mar-14 20:40:09

My daughter attends a drama class as part of the Youth theatre at out local theatre. It's a lovely inclusive class - so I would definitely recommend seeing if there was anything like that available near you.

Corriewatcher Thu 06-Mar-14 16:22:28

Thanks very much for the suggestions. I hadn't thought of our local theatre having a group. Just looked it up and unfortunately it's closed for a few months but I will keep that suggestion for another time. Think I will take advantage of the free trials and see which one he likes best (although he didn't seem too keen when I "gently floated" the idea to him!)

EvilTwins Thu 06-Mar-14 22:01:30

I was also going to suggest checking out your local theatre. Ours has a fabulous youth theatre starting for littlies, and going up to doing seriously good quality drama for older teens. My DTDs go at the moment, and are in the junior group, but some of the kids I teach are in the older class and I've seen some of their productions - they are excellent.

I echo that PQA, Stagecoach etc can vary in quality because of the nature of the franchise set up.

Definitely go for a local independent rather than any of the franchises. They will be able to work on what the children in the group are interested in and capable of, rather than what it says in the book/file of lesson plans.

Picturesinthefirelight Wed 19-Mar-14 08:47:54

Is that what some of the franchises do then? I know that's not the case at Stagecoach. Each term the teachers get together & decide what to work on depending on the ages, abilities & interests of the children & also depending on particular tutors specialisms.

Stagecoach is the best of the franchises by quite some way, but some of them are shockers.

nonicknameseemsavailable Thu 20-Mar-14 13:44:28

the other thing to look at is if there is some degree of 'homework'. I know other mums who have to come up with outfits and props each week before class whereas for my children THEY are expected to do something such as practice a mime about their favourite thing or think about how animals move so they can then copy, look round the house for everyday objects that could be used as props for something different. means the children are doing it rather than me having to make outfits and remember things.

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