Block 3 experience The Tempest

To support the study of Shakespeare, the English department took all Block 3 to the Royal Shakespeare Theatre matinee performance of The Tempest in Stratford-upon-Avon on Thursday 12 January.

This was a very exciting opportunity as the production has had rave reviews including: ★★★★ ”Simon Russell Beale’s superb Prospero” The Guardian, ★★★★★ “State-of-the-art stagecraft” Financial Times and ★★★★ “The visuals are true to the hype of a breath-taking order” Daily Telegraph. The students also attended a Workshop about The Tempest at The Shakespeare Birthplace Trust in the morning which very effectively introduced them to the main characters, themes and ideas about staging and interpretation. The overwhelming response from the students was that it had indeed been a wonderful experience. Read some of their anonymous responses below…

256px-rsc_theatre_stratford-upon-avon_13f2005Last week, I saw The Tempest, written by Shakespeare, and performed by the Royal Shakespeare Company at Stratford, directed by Gregory Doran. 

The plot of The Tempest was about two people, a father and daughter, banished to an island by Prospero’s brother, who now fills his position as Duke. On the island, Prospero has two slaves, one magical and one monster. With the help of Ariel, his sprite, he traps his brother and the rest of the royals in a storm out at sea not far from the island. When the royal party are swept ashore, Prospero makes them suffer as he once did.

Throughout the performance of The Tempest I enjoyed the character of Ariel, played by Mark Quartley. As Ariel was a sprite, his movement was very quiet and elegant – he really made you believe that he was invisible and magical.

I also enjoyed the performance of Stephano (played by Tony Jayawardena), one of the people from the ship wreck, he was the King’s butler, and throughout the play, played a very drunk character.

One of the parts that truly made the show stand-out from all the other productions of The Tempest and made it exciting to watch, were the effects, the lighting and the stage set. When Ariel first appeared on stage, he was shown as a projection on a cylinder.  One of my favourite special effect moments was a part in the storm when Gonzalo went from being on the ship, to being underwater – they showed that very well…

See what the audiences are saying about The Tempest:

Read a review of The Tempest published in The Stage
View images from the production

…The Tempest was an amazing play about Prospero (Simon Russell Beale) who was overthrown from his Dukedom by his brother Antonio (Oscar Pearce).

Prospero managed to survive thanks to Gonzalo (Joseph Mydell) a trustworthy servant who gave him books of magic, food and water.

After the wedding of the King of Naples’ daughter, a storm brings them to an island where Prospero and his daughter Miranda are stranded.

My favourite character was Ariel because he played exactly as you would imagine: light and dainty but could also be cheeky and moody. Ariel’s costume was also how most people would imagine: it was blue and it had parts with glitter and green, his hair was also quite spectacular and it had been slicked back into three spikes. Another character I thought was amazing was Juno, one of the spirits, because she really looked like a goddess and acted like one. Her dress was very big and she moved very elegantly, almost floating.


Bedales A Level Success

Bedales students have achieved strong A Level results for 2013 with 40% of all grades at A*-A. They have secured places at universities including Oxford, Cambridge, Edinburgh, Exeter, Bristol, St Andrews, York, Warwick, Leicester, Leeds, Manchester, Kings College London, University College London, Imperial College London, Plymouth, Aberdeen, Swansea, Sheffield, Nottingham and Brunel, art colleges such as Falmouth University, Arts University Bournemouth, City College Brighton, University of the Arts London and UCA Farnham, as well as international institutions including New York University.

Six Bedales students have secured places at Oxford and Cambridge; four have done so through this summer’s grades and two former students received unconditional offers.

Sam Wilkinson from Midhurst, who will read Physics at Oriel College, Oxford, received his results today having spent the summer working as a Data Scientist for NASA in collaboration with their team which is based at the Johnson Space Centre in Houston, Texas. Sam achieved four A*s in Chemistry, Physics, Mathematics and Further Mathematics, and an A grade in Biology.

Katie Millard from Hambledon will read French and Linguistics at Keble College, Oxford after achieving 4 A*s in Chemistry, Latin, English Literature and French. Maddy Green from Liss will read Medicine at Murray Edwards College, Cambridge after achieving three A*s in Biology, Chemistry and Mathematics, and an A in Further Mathematics. Nell Whittaker from Shrewsbury will study English at Fitzwilliam College, Cambridge after achieving an A* grade in English Literature and two A grades in Latin and History. Former student Christy Callaway-Gale from Petersfield will read Spanish and Linguistics at Oriel College, Oxford after achieving three A Level A* grades last summer. Rosie Nicolson from Cranbrook, Kent will study Architecture at Cambridge, having gained three A Level A* grades at Bedales in 2011. Three of the students, Christy, Sam and Maddy, were taught at Bedales Prep, Dunhurst, before progressing to Bedales senior school and sixth form.

Two students; Georgina Gulliver from Buriton and Deputy Head Girl, Katie Shannon, from Steep will both go on to read Architecture at the University of Manchester and the University of Edinburgh respectively. Georgina achieved two As in Art and Mathematics and a D3 in Music Pre-U. Katie achieved three As in Art, Design and Mathematics, and a B in Physics.

Tim Jones from Dorking will read Mathematics at Imperial College London after achieving three A*s in Chemistry, Mathematics, and Further Mathematics, and an A grade in Physics. Joe Pemberton from Chichester will also read Mathematics, but at the University of Warwick, after achieving two A*s in Mathematics and Further Mathematics, an A in Latin and a D3 in Music Pre-U. Lucy Waterhouse from Midhurst achieved two A*s in Drama & Theatre Studies and History, and an A grade in English Literature and will read History of Art at the University of Bristol. Evie Cullingworth from Downley, Buckinghamshire achieved two As in English Literature and Drama & Theatre Studies, a D3 in Music Pre-U and will study Drama at New York University.

Felix Conran from London is delighted to have secured a place at the University of the Arts in London to study Product Design and Arran Stamper from Preston, Lancashire will read Illustration at the University of Edinburgh (after achieving two A*s in Art and Russian, and an A grade in Design). This is a particular achievement for both these students as it is rare for Art and Design students to be offered places on such prestigious arts degree courses without having first completed a Foundation Diploma year. This was because their work was of such a high calibre.

Although both receiving university places, Archie Howes from Ropley and George Veys from Guildford have decided to set up their own business, Darkroom Productions, an event management company providing the sound and lighting for festivals, concerts and corporate events.

Commenting on the results, Keith Budge, Headmaster of Bedales Schools, said:

“Congratulations to our students on their hard work and good results. Bedales students progress to an impressive range of universities and art colleges in the UK and overseas. I’m sure that the 2013 leavers will go on to make a significant contribution in a broad range of fields across the arts, sciences and business.”

Other Bedales student successes include:

  • Sebi Bacon from Steep achieved two A*s in History and Mathematics, and an A grade in Physics; to study Economics at University College London.
  • Georgia Green from Steep achieved an A* in Drama & Theatre Studies and two A grades in English Literature and Spanish.
  • Elize Layton from London achieved an A* in Drama & Theatre Studies, and two A grades in Dance and Religious Studies.
  • Piper Anderson-Klotz from London achieved an A* in Art, an A grade in French and a B in Classical Civilisation.
  • Toby Matimong from Southsea achieved an A* in English Literature, a D2 in Music Pre-U, and a B grade in Biology.
  • Egor Platon from Chisinau, Moldova achieved an A* in Russian and two B grades in History and Mathematics.
  • Jessica Sankey from Petersfield achieved an A* in English Literature, and two B grades in Classical Civilisation and History; to study English at the University of Sussex.
  • Reuben Thompson from London achieved an A* in English Literature and two B grades in Economics and Geography; to study Geography at the University of Exeter.
  • Anna Brown from Liss achieved three As in Biology, Physics and Geography.
  • Scarlet Watney from Bosham achieved three A grades in Design, Economics and Mathematics.
  • Georgina Brand from Petersfield achieved two As in Design and Psychology, and a B in English Literature; to study Fashion Communication at Northumbria University.
  • Anna Jacobs from West Meon achieved two As in Biology and History, and a B grade in Mathematics.
  • Sophie Grierson from London achieved two As in English Literature and Drama & Theatre Studies, and a B grade in Classical Civilisation; to study English Literature at the University of Leeds.
  • Oscar Cooper (Head Boy) from Southsea achieved two As in Economics and History, and a B in Mathematics.
  • Bethany Maskall achieved two As in Biology and Chemistry, and a B in Drama & Theatre Studies; to study Biochemistry at the University of Sheffield.
  • Mohammad Pechuho from Karachi, Pakistan achieved two As in English Literature and Religious Studies, and a B in Classical Civilisation; to study Classical Studies at the University of St Andrews.
  • Talia Pick from Chichester achieved two As in English Literature and Drama & Theatre Studies, and a B in History.
  • Charlotte Robins from Winchester achieved two As in Biology and Mathematics, and a B grade in Physics; to study Natural Sciences at the University of Exeter.
  • Eleana Wilson-Smith from Midhurst achieved two As in Religious Studies and Spanish and a B in Art; to study a Foundation Diploma in Art & Design at Arts University Bournemouth.
  • Oliver May from Lymington achieved an A in French, and two B grades in Biology and Chemistry.
  • Neal Raithatha from East Meon achieved an A in Mathematics, and two Bs in Chemistry and Economics; to study Mathematics at Loughborough University.
  • Izabela Swiderska from Petersfield achieved three B grades in Design, Psychology and Spanish; to study a Foundation Diploma in Art & Design at University College Falmouth.

The full A Level statistics were as follows:

  • A* passes: 14%
  • A* – A passes: 40%
  • A* – B passes: 63%
  • A* – E passes: 99%

Cambridge Pre-U D1and D2 grades are equivalent to an A*; a D3 is equivalent to an A; M1 is equivalent to an A grade and M2/M3 merit grades are equivalent to B grade.

Please note that this data is provisional and subject to re-marks.

View photos.

Bedales A-Level Success 2013

Bedales A-Level Success 2013

Bedales A-Level Success 2013


Bedales School is one of the UK’s top independent private co-education boarding schools. Bedales comprises three schools situated in Steep, near Petersfield, Hampshire: Dunannie (ages 3–8), Dunhurst (ages 8–13) and Bedales itself (ages 13–18). Established in 1893 Bedales School puts emphasis on the Arts, Sciences, voluntary service, pastoral care, and listening to students’ views. Bedales is acclaimed for its drama, theatre, art and music. The Headmaster is Keith Budge.