Performing Arts at DESC

DESC’s Performing Arts vision is to be an internationally important creative hub at the heart of a thriving and resilient theatre and performance ecology in the UAE.  

Performing Arts at DESC brings together the three discrete subject areas of Dance, Drama and Music. There is a commitment to the arts and its importance in providing students with a holistic education.

As a Faculty, we feel it is important to offer students the opportunity to perform at the highest level while also remaining inclusive to all, offering students a broad range of opportunities to develop their creative skills. Students are given numerous opportunities to become involved in the individual disciplines of Dance, Drama and Music, as well as collaborative opportunities where two or more art forms combine.

Between the ages of 11-13, students at DESC study Drama and Music every week as part of their program of study. During this time, they undertake a range of units that allow them to experience a variety of stimuli and scripts in order develop key themes and ideas within discussion and performance.  

For our Key Stage 4 and 5 students there are a range of pathways they are able to pursue within the Arts curriculum, including IGCSE Drama, Dance and Music, A Level Theatre Studies and A Level Music. We are also the only school in the UAE to offer Rock School London vocational courses at KS5; CAPA (Creative and Performing Arts) and MUSPRA (Music Practitioners). The Rock School London course is bespoke to every learner, being both flexible and adaptable and includes modules in Acting, Dance, Musical Theatre, Arts Administration, Music Technology and Backstage Managers.

The Faculty work collaboratively each year on a whole school Musical, most recently these have included We Will Rock You, The Sound of Music, Beauty and the Beast, Billy Elliot and the Wizard of Oz. We also offer a number of smaller performances throughout the year including a Key Stage 3 performance, Dance Troupe competition pieces, Battle of the DESC, Interhouse Performing Arts Competition, DESC’s Got Talent, Performing Arts Week, and DESC Fest to name but a few.

The Faculty recently underwent a significant renovation which included the refurbishment of three Drama studios, three lighting rigs and three Music classrooms, one of which is a fully equipped Mac Suite with adjoining Recording Studio.

Alumni students have gone on to study at some of the most prestigious Performing Arts institutions in the world including:

  • NYU Tisch School of Art
  • Anglia Ruskin University, Cambridge
  • Oxford School of Drama
  • University of British Columbia, Vancouver
  • Institute of Arts, Barcelona
  • PPA Academy, Guildford
  • Royal Holloway, London
  • Urdang Academy, London
  • ArtsEd, London

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