King’s has a national reputation for its drama. There is an ambitious and varied annual season of school, house and independent plays, giving scope to very large numbers of pupils to become involved in the theatrical life of the school.
Collyer Hall Theatre, our purpose-built, professional-standard performance venue, is fully equipped with state-of-the-art lighting, sound and stage technology. Productions also regularly take place in the drama studio - an ideal location for atmospheric, more intimate work - and the school's international garden. In addition to drama teaching staff, pupils work with the theatre technical manager, the theatre and events technician and the theatre administrator on the backstage elements of mounting productions.
Since King’s became one of the only schools in history to play a commercial, West End run with Never the Sinner in 1996, off-site productions have become a regular feature of the season. The school has received consistent critical acclaim for its productions at the Edinburgh Festival, and staged productions in several London venues as part of the Shakespeare schools festival. On Friday afternoons, drama-related options include joint projects with local primary and secondary schools, ‘Theatre sports’ improvisation, theatre production and stage design. The Theatre Society takes regular trips to the latest work produced in London and beyond. In addition, leading theatre companies and practitioners have visited King’s for workshops and master classes. In recent years, the Cambridge Footlights have been amongst the companies touring productions to Collyer Hall Theatre on an annual basis.
In the sixth form, pupils have the opportunity to get involved in and take responsibility for all aspects of theatre-making, from directing their house play, to stage managing a large-scale musical. Drama scholarships are awarded to enthusiasts of outstanding ability and potential as performers, technicians or practitioners. The flourishing drama scene at King’s has inspired a very large number of pupils to make a career in the world of theatre and film as actors, directors, comedians, writers or lighting and sound designers. Most notably of late, Ben Barnes played the title roles in feature-films Prince Caspian and Dorian Gray