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2 Years
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Performing Arts

The Performing Arts department at Kendal College is widely respected throughout the country, with a strong record of propelling talented creative students into performance and creative careers. We make no excuse for having some of the highest success rates in the country and students who follow their dreams.

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Rachael Stott | Level 3 Performing Arts

Having to learn the skill set has been good for my confidence; I am not a dancer, but I’ve learned a lot. I now have the practical experience I was lacking before. We get to devise a lot, and I have been directing quite a bit which has increased my confidence in that area as well.

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Course Overview

This is a 2-year course and is equivalent to 3 A-Levels and is worth up to 168 UCAS points (Triple Distinction*) or 144 UCAS points (Triple Distinction). UCAS have recently changed the UCAS Tariff from September 2017 so they could include more qualifications. The new Tariff points are lower than the original Tariff points but the value remains the same, as universities will just use lower Tariff numbers in their entry requirements than in previous years.

This is an exciting course which aims to develop your performance skills in acting, dance and musical theatre. Throughout the year you will be able specialise in your preferred discipline or improve in all three 'triple threat' areas to a high standard. The course is highly practical with a focus on rehearsals and performance in all areas.

You will be taught by industry professionals who bring to your subject area their up to date knowledge and experience. The tutors are a dedicated team who will ensure you work in a professional environment that is inclusive and supportive allowing you to take risks in your own performance work.

Each year in January the performing arts student take part in an optional residential in London visiting shows, exhibitions and taking part in workshops at Pineapple Dance Studios and with musical theatre companies responsible for shows such as 'Wicked', 'The Lion King' and 'Matilda' for example.

The ethos is to learn through training and performance. In addition to the Extended Diploma there is opportunity to study with The Pezet Actor's Studio which is based at The Box; to qualify in LAMDA grades up to grade 8 and ABRSM graded singing qualifications.

All of our learners will be given support with their English and Maths skills where relevant to their main course. Those students who have not yet achieved a Grade 4 (or C) at GCSE in these subjects will continue to work towards these important qualifications at a level suited to them. However, students will still have to achieve the stated Entry Requirements before they start the course.

First year - Your course will cover all aspects of actor training from classical theatre to the latest contemporary approaches. In dance training classes, you will study diverse genre from contemporary to jazz and street dance to professional repertoire. Performances range from a musical theatre showcase, a full scale in-house ensemble production, a contemporary dance show to a musical production at The Brewery Arts Centre. The course has many links in the community which means plenty of opportunity to perform in outside projects for example a Second World War Role Play Day with local primary schools and an 'After Dinner Cabaret' for the guests of The Langdale Estates.

Second year - This year introduces extra units which include a full scale touring children's production to rural primary schools, an audition showcase of material for drama and dance schools, a Film and Television unit, a radio theatre training unit, a performing arts entrepreneur unit, a full scale dance production and major final musical production at The Brewery Arts Centre.

The course also invites in outside practitioners. Past work has included a street theatre project with 'The Bread & Butter Theatre', which culminated in a performance to the general public in Kendal; a Hip Hop workshop with 'DecaDance' from New York and a TV workshop with Karen Henthorn from Coronation Street, as examples.

Continuous assessment though observation and film of practical work, portfolios of evidence, essays, logbooks and E-Portfolio work. The emphasis is on you to critically reflect on practical work as you develop and grow as a performer at the academic Level of A' Levels.

Entry Requirements

You will require Five GCSE at Grade 4 or above, preferably including English and Drama, Dance or Similar; or a Level (First) Diploma in performance at Distinction.

Important to note: you will be required to audition for this course by presenting:
- An acting monologue
- Either a solo dance (style of your choice) or a song.

Tutors are happy to discuss this with you and can provide material if required. Some tutor discretion may be allowed on grades/ qualifications for outstanding performers.

NB: Enrolment on this course is dependent on meeting the Entry Requirements stated above.

After Your Course

The majority of one year students' progress to the Extended Diploma and complete further training with the college.

The majority of Extended Diploma students' progress to Higher Education either through the University route or professional training in acting, dance or musical theatre.They progress onto degrees in teaching and arts management to promotions and marketing. Performing Arts is an excellent subject to develop communication, confidence and team working skills and is relevant as a background for many other areas at HE. In the past two years students have progressed to East 15, LAMDA, The Royal Central School of Speech & Drama, Urdang, Leeds Metropolitan, Dance City, London Contemporary, LIPA, London School of Musical Theatre and AlRA.

Several students have progressed directly into employment to work with Disney, Cruise Ships, and Street Theatre companies or have created their own professional acting or dance companies.



Course fees are per year for full-time & degree-level courses, and per course for part-time ones. The current full-time & degree-level fee information is related to the 2020/21 academic year and is subject to change before the start of the course. Fees for 2021/22 will be updated in the Spring Term 2021. There may also be additional costs associated with the course.

This course is funded by the government and may be free if you are:

  • Aged 16-18 on 31/08/20
  • Aged 19-23 on an Entry Level or Level 1 course with intent to progress to a Level 2 course
  • Aged 19-23 on your first full Level 2 or Level 3 course
  • Aged 19-23 on your first Level 4 course (if you haven’t already got a Level 3 qualification)
  • Aged 19+ on Functions Skills or GCSE English or Maths
  • Unemployed and in receipt of JSA/ESA(WRAG)/Universal Credit or another eligible state benefit on an Entry Level, Level 1 or Level 2 course
  • Member of a low income household & in financial hardship on an Entry Level, Level 1 or Level 2 course

Level 3-6 Courses for Adults

Advanced Learning Loans are available for students aged 19+ and studying an eligible Level 3/4/5 and 6 Course. If you are on an Access course, the loan will be written off if you complete a degree.

Please speak to Student Services for more information on course fees.