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Performing Arts CTEC


Performing Arts OCR Cambridge Technical Extended Diploma Course Outline

Advanced Level 3
Awarding Body: OCR

Study Performing Arts

The performing arts industry is a creative and exciting one but is also extremely competitive.  This Performing Arts Extended Diploma, (equivalent to 3 ‘A’ levels) has been developed to prepare you not only to perform on stage but also focuses on the skills, knowledge and understanding that today’s universities and employers demand.  You will develop technical and performance skills as well as the theoretical knowledge and understanding to underpin these skills. You will gain an understanding of how different businesses and organisations in the performing arts field work and understand the variety of opportunities that are available to you.  The course will enable you to develop strategies, attitudes and survival skills for sustaining a career in the performing arts industry.

Entry Requirements

The General entry requirements for Advanced Vocational Programme courses are five GCSEs grades 9-4 and above, including English Language.

Grade 4 English - MM Extended Certificate L2

You need to demonstrate an interest in Performing Arts and to have an intention to progress into a related career. You will be expected to have performing experience and ideally a GCSE in Drama or Performing Arts.

As part of the course is assessed through coursework assignments, you must have excellent attendance and good organisation skills.  You will have to manage your coursework deadlines, because if you miss a deadline you will not be able to achieve a merit or distinction grade for that assignment.


Board: OCR

This is a two year, full time course which is made up of 4 mandatory units and 3 Pathway mandatory units from the Musical Theatre pathway:

  • Unit 1: Preparing for work in the Performing Arts sector.
  • Unit 2: Proposal for a commissioning brief
  • Unit 3: Influential Performance Practice
  • Unit 32 Arts Administration
  • Unit 9: Acting Technique
  • Unit 13: Dance Technique
  • Unit 26: Singing Technique


Individual units will be graded as Pass (P), Merit (M) or Distinction (D). At the end of the qualification the points are added up to create an overall grade.

Year 12 assessment

  • Unit 2 : Proposal Report 1,500-2,000 words
  • Unit 3: Report in response to a statement/Performance of 2 solos to camera (5-8 mins)

Year 13 assessment

  • Unit 1: Pitch to camera in response to an advertisement for a job role/Audition piece to camera (Max 5 mins)
  • Unit 32: 2 hour written exam     
  • Other units      internally set assignments



Many students will wish to progress onto a course in Higher Education in the performing arts field.

Alternatively, you may progress to an apprenticeship or directly into employment. This course will prepare you thoroughly for the next step in your career path.

Student Testimonials

"Joining performing arts at St Charles College I can proudly say has drastically changed me in many ways. Most importantly, I have gained a huge amount of confidence in my abilities and it has shaped my dance journey and helped me to become a strong and expressive performer.


Having the chance to perform at professional theatres and in competitions has given me great experiences that I can carry forward to higher education. Regular trips to the theatre has given me valuable insights into how to become the best performer I can be. Learning about how to survive as a freelance practitioner in the dance industry and apply for funding from different agencies will be invaluable for my future. I've loved being part of many college performances and have enjoyed working as part of the Performing Arts team.


Working with industry professionals has elevated my knowledge and skills and I am so pleased that I chose St Charles as my college!"

"I’ve grown both as a performer and as a person. I’ve been fortunate to perform at the National Theatre within a month of being a Performing Arts student and we’ve been on several trips to watch shows. I’ve enjoyed being surrounded by people with the same interests and watching them illustrate their many talents.


I see my class as a family. We may disagree at times but always find our way back to being able to work. They allow me to feel comfortable and be able to do what I love without feeling as though I need to suppress myself.


Biggest Thanks to Ms Nash & Sky Montique who have helped me gain confidence."

"Performing Arts has always been a passion of mine. I’ve had the best opportunities to be on the course and meet new people. The theatre is a place where people come together and walk out with smiles on their faces and we can express ourselves through performing."

"Performing Arts is so welcoming. I love the unity and community feel that it brings. From the teacher to the students, everybody loves being together, rehearsing and performing together and improving our acting, dancing and singing skills."

“I found the Performing arts course truly inspiring – it helped me with my creative way of thinking and make it easier to devise theatre whilst combining the art forms.” 

The Performing arts department is very exciting as there are always rehearsals or workshops going on.  I appreciated the expertise of my teachers but also learnt allot from the professional performers who came to work with us.  I would recommend that you study Performing arts as not only is it fun but I learnt so much about myself and how to work with others too.” 

Extra Curricular

Students on this course will attend various theatre trips and workshops and will be required to pay an additional £50 to fund these trips.  This will be paid on registration. 

Students are required to wear appropriate clothing for workshops sessions and to come to lessons ready with folders and notebooks.

There will be plenty of opportunities to take part in extra-curricular activities such as the SCC (St Charles Dance Company) and the Christmas musical production.

Department Staff

You will be taught by Mrs Nash and will participate in workshops with visiting practitioners.

Please contact Mrs Nash (Head of Performing arts):

For further information about the course, visit: