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Performing Arts Festival of Education 2022

The UK’s first residential Educational Performing Arts Festival.

We are absolutely delighted to offer a brand new, exclusive, UK festival programme created specifically to support the teaching of Performing Arts at BTEC and A level.

Our Performing Arts Festival programme has been designed in consultation with current Performing Arts teachers and will focus on many of the key themes that feature in UK exam board specifications.

We are delighted that Olivier Award Winner Matthew Kelly will be opening our festival. With a career spanning over 40 years on stage and screen, covering everything from Shakespeare to Light Entertainment, Matthew will both inspire and entertain your students with insights, highlights and incredible stories of his long and illustrious career. A Q&A session will give them the ultimate opportunity to get advise from someone who has achieved so much in the Arts industry.

The festival will include:

A series of highly engaging presentations delivered by leading industry professionals including internationally renowned theatre company Frantic Assembly, will cover a range of key themes. 

A range of expert-led workshops which that provide: ‘hands-on’ experience some of the technical skills, such as stage lighting and using a sound desk, which can be more difficult to deliver in school; and the chance to work with, and learn from an actor, a choreographer and playwright.

The festival’s presentations and workshops will not only inspire and entertain your students, they will provide a wonderful boost to their confidence and, at the same time giving them extremely valuable insight into how they can pursue a career in the Arts.

Find out more about our Expert Performing Arts Speakers 


We are delighted to announce that the venue for the Performing Arts Festival will be the wonderful Mercury Theatre, Colchester. Described as ‘an artistic powerhouse in the East’, the Theatre has recently undergone a £10 million refurbishment.

We have been working closely with Ryan McBryde, Creative Director of the Mercury Theatre, whose wealth of connections both in the West End and the Arts as a whole, have been keen to securing some of the fantastic speakers and workshop leaders who will be participating in this unique event.


Study Experiences Performing Arts Festival will take place on 4th - 5th July 2022


As part of the festival package, groups attending this event will be booked in to bed & breakfast accommodation at a Premier Inn, Travelodge or equivalent, in the Colchester area.

Extend your trip with a day in London 

As Colchester is located so close to the city you may wish to add on an extra day to your itinerary with a visit to London to enjoy a West End show. Find out more about what you can do here - London's West End

Get in touch

Get a quick quote today, and a member of our team will be in touch to discuss your Performing Arts Festival in more detail.

Performing Arts Festival of Education 2022

Sample Itinerary

Day 1


Your welcome to The Performing Arts Festival of Education will include an introduction to the speakers and overview of the event. You will then hear from our speakers from a well known Casting Agency covering all aspects of the casting process followed by a representative from a world-renowned performance school. They will talk to students about their organisation, advice, what they look for, other similar options, career paths and famous students


This afternoon will include an interactive session from a playwright who will talk through main process of script writing, styles, use examples with their own work, engage and interact. A session will be delivered by Frantic Assembly, a well-known Physical Theatre company whose style is used in a very high % of exam performance pieces by students. They will deliver a session taking students from schools in the audience and building a physical theatre piece from scratch. We will hear from a part-time actor who will cover the realities of acting and how to still pursue acting without it being the sole source of income.


This evening you will have the opportunity to see a performance at the Mercury Theatre. Tickets will be available at a discounted rate.

Day 2


This morning will start with the Lighting In Theatre 1 hour workshop. After this you will take part in your optional workshops which have been chosen in advance.


If time permits after workshops free time in the area


Depart for your return journey

Curricular Links

This event will be designed to support Performing Arts Studies at BTEC and meets the requirements of all the major examination boards. It is also aimed at appealing to Performing Arts students through its well-rounded content and access to industry professionals.

BTEC Levels 1-2 Tech Awards Performing Arts

Component 2: Developing Skills and Techniques in the Performing Arts

Learning Aims:

  • A1 Development of performance/design and interpretative skills
  • A2 Develop skills and techniques during the rehearsal process
  • B1 Application of skills and techniques during rehearsal
  • B2 Application of skills and techniques in/for performance
  • C1 Review own development of skills and techniques in/for performance
  • C2 Review own application of skills and techniques in/for performance

Component 3: Responding to a Brief

Assessment objectives

  • AO1 Understand how to respond to a brief
  • AO2 Select and develop skills and techniques in response to a brief
  • AO3 Apply skills and techniques in a workshop performance in response to a brief
  • AO4 Evaluate the development process and outcome in response to a brief

BTEC Higher National Levels 4-5 Performing Arts

Unit 1 The Performing Arts Industry
Unit 2 Professional Development
Unit 9 Choreography
Unit 13 Acting 1
Unit 14 Musical Theatre History in Practice
Unit 15 Ensemble Singing
Unit 17 Acting for Camera
Unit 18 Voice and Speech for Actors
Unit 19 Movement for Actors
Unit 20 Devising Theatre and Performance
Unit 22 Stagecraft
Unit 23 Lighting Operation
Unit 24 Sound Operation Unit
Unit 26 Scenic Construction
Unit 33 Working in the Performing Arts Industry
Unit 39 Dance for Musical Theatre
Unit 44 Acting 2
Unit 54 Production Design
Unit 57 Lighting Design
Unit 58 Set Design
Unit 59 Stage Management
Unit 63 Working In Creative Education
Unit 64 Directing


On day 2 your students can choose from a range of workshops. The day will start with Lighting in Theatre which everyone will attend 

Lighting in Theatre. 1 hr. Likely to take place in the main theatre, so likely session for all. Will be interactive to keep students engaged. Expert to briefly talk through their own career pathway/experience. If there is an evening performance ongoing at the theatre, we will use their Lighting Director.  They will talk through their programme set up. Setting for differing scenes/ briefs/moods with results shown on stage.  Students will be encouraged to interact /suggest and will see changes in lighting on stage. Possibly copy disk and play with in the session. This is another area highlighted by teachers as difficult to teach particularly if they lack equipment.

They can then take part an additional two workshops, choosing from these options:

Acting Performance /Feedback
With time to rehearse in advance, your students will have the opportunity to perform a 6 minute scene from a set text. Following their performance they will receive useful and constructive feedback from the festival's industry experts, that will give them key pointers on their strengths and areas that they can work on. 

Choreography Workshop
Run by a West End Choreographer and taking place on a dance studio, your dancers can choose a pre-set routine in advance that they will rehearse and then perform. Our choreographer will then discuss the routine and offer ideas and feedback. This workshop is particularly useful for BTEC students. 

Sound Deck Studio workshop
Your students will enjoy an interactive session in a well equipped studio, working on a sound deck. Our industry expert will give an overview of their career and the experience they have followed by an overview of the equipment, changes genres and will offer up some tricks of the trade. 

Page to Stage workshop
This workshop will be run by a playwright or scriptwriter and is aimed at building students' confidence and giving them inspiration to write short scenes. They will also have the opportunity to act out their scenes.

Putting on a show
An experienced Theatre Director will lead this workshop covering the whole process of the idea of a performance through to opening night and includes all key roles involved in this process, using specific examples of a known show. This workshop helps to demonstrate to students the number of pathways for a career in Performing Arts.

What's included

Your tour price will include:

  • Seminars & Workshops
  • B&B accommodation
  • Coach Travel for 2 days
  • Breakfast day 2
  • Refreshments during days 1 & 2
  • Lunch not included
  • Evening meal not included 
Performing Arts Festival of Education 2022 Prices
40 + 4 35 - 39 + 4 30 - 34 + 3 25 - 29 + 3 20 - 24 + 2
£179 £189 £195 £205 £225

Please be aware that the timings and content of the programme for Performing Arts Festival of Education 2022 may be subject to change at short notice. In the unlikely event that such changes prove necessary FHT will notify you as soon as possible. Please note, FHT cannot accept responsibility for any visits and excursions, which you book direct.

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