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Y12 Upton House Project 2018

In 1927 Lord and Lady Bearsted viewed Upton House with ‘the eye of imagination’ and soon set about creating their made-to-measure country home. Year 12 Drama and Theatre studies students were very lucky to be given permission to perform for The National Trust at Upton House as part of this project.

Before our performance at Upton we researched the typical costume and hair for the time period. We dressed in Flapper style outfits with dropped waistbands and low heels, accessorised with feather boas, sequined headbands and long beads. The gentlemen wore tweed trousers and cotton shirts and became the photographers creating a photoshoot for the next edition of Country Life – a popular publication at the time. This was inspired by the exhibition of magazine front covers currently on display at Upton.

We worked on developing our characters by contrasting attitudes and gave ourselves 1920s themed names such as ‘Opal’ and ‘Ethel’. From this we improvised short vignettes that could take place around the house and gardens. We discussed fashions, popular literature and social status based on our research from the late 1920s.

Our performance started as soon as we got out of the minibus in character. We strolled in the scorching sunshine to our first location by the pool. When leaving the garden, we moved into the house visiting three rooms and again discussing the notoriety of the time and the excitement surrounding the suffragette movement. In our final location we performed ‘The Charleston’ with Lily on the piano and Derry playing the saxophone. A roaring success!

Year 12 Drama and Theatre Studies 2018


Take a look at the brilliant video of the day!


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