L-R: Hafidh Abdalla, James Davies and Raphael Wreford. Watch their performances at the bottom of the page!

A key thread that runs through all aspects of school life is a commitment to bring students’ classroom learning to life in fun and engaging ways. This is a vital component to ensuring that students retain knowledge.

In Year 9, students learn about the author and poet William Shakespeare for the first time, through their English and drama lessons. Shakespeare is renowned as one of the best writers of all time but we all remember from our own school days that his work can be difficult to comprehend! So, the departments teamed up to enter students in the ESU Performing Shakespeare Competition.

This competition is inclusive and encourages students to develop their public speaking skills. We wanted to take part as we felt that introducing the boys to Shakespeare through performance would help get rid of some of the stigma surrounding him. All Year 9s were encouraged to enter and had to perform either a Shakespearean monologue (a speech by one character) or a duologue (featuring two characters) of their choosing. Students were also required to introduce their performance with a bit of context about what their extract means – deepening their understanding of the text.

We had 30 entries in total – a fantastic effort! Three students – Hafidh Abdalla (9Sh), James Davies (9Sn) And Raphael Wreford (9Tu) – qualified for the regional final based on the quality of their performances, which you can watch below. James even received a Judges Commendation, finishing as narrow runner-up behind the two London students who reached the Grand Final.

Well done to everyone who entered and especially to the three regional finalists. In school, we are extremely proud of our extra-curricular offer, which we know is the best for boys. We will never stop encouraging our students to develop their passions and nurture new skills.


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