Lara in action

Drama and Theatre is an integral part of life at Dubai College. We teach the subject with a commitment to its status as an art form, encouraging imagination, empathy and reflection.

We offer Drama and Theatre Studies from Year 7 through to Year 13. We are a popular and highly successful choice at GCSE and A Level, with students growing personally and academically from their studies.

We also offer a range of opportunities for students to engage in performance, direction and technical theatre skills outside of the classroom. One of the annual highlights in the Dubai College calendar is the whole College production, alternating performances of large-scale ensemble texts with collaborative musical favourites! Past productions include Hairspray, The Tempest, Alice in Wonderland, West Side Story, The Odyssey, Our Day Out, Guys and Dolls and Little Shop of Horrors.

Alongside our big scale productions, we also produce a vast array of smaller pieces throughout the year with multiple devised and text-based examination performances, the popular House Drama Competition, Drama Club and our fantastic school exchange programme with Bedales School in Hampshire, UK.

We are well equipped with a state of the art 900 seat Auditorium for our productions, along with a more intimate and fully resourced 140 seat Drama Studio. LED lighting, sound systems, mirrored studio space and an extensive costume cupboard all ensure that our Drama lessons are inspiring and stimulating for all students!

What makes a good teacher at Dubai College?

Teachers at Dubai College have a real passion and drive for not only their subject specialism, but their professional development. They really care about making sure the students are getting the very best out of their Education. Teachers care about the students’ well-being and help to guide them through all aspects of their life. It really is a lovely and welcoming place for everyone.

What are you trying to encourage and instil in your students?

As a Drama teacher I am always trying to get students to understand the world around them with compassion and empathy. I really encourage students to always see two sides to every story and develop their critical thinking skills on how this has an impact on the way that they live their lives today.

We create an environment where students can develop their confidence, by using movement and voice to communicate a wide range of ideas to audiences. It is great to see the students develop their creative approaches to each task and I hope that by the time their Drama journey is finished we have instilled an imaginative approach to any challenges that they face in the outside world.

In your opinion, what makes Dubai College special?

The overall community spirit in the College makes it truly one of a kind. The students are phenomenal, but so are our support staff, boys and girls in blue, teachers and the friends of Dubai College. Everyone works together to ultimately make sure the students get the best outcome and I am always in awe of all the work that everyone does.  I feel very grateful to be a part of such a wonderful school.

Who or what inspires you?

I am very much driven by the world of work that practitioners continue to make in the Theatre industry. Frantic Assembly, DV8, Complicite, Katie Mitchell and the amazing productions produced at the National Theatre. Seeing the way theatre makers continue to highlight changes in our world makes me want to prepare the students for the industry when they leave. I want them to experience a wide range of techniques and I hope they feel they have a breadth of knowledge. When the students then use these skills in class, I am always excited to see the outcomes of what they have produced, and I am always amazed at how professional the students at Dubai College can be.

Tell us something not a lot of people know about you.

I would like to say that people do not know I am secretly obsessed with musicals and Beyonce, but all the students have already figured that out very quickly. Something that a lot of people do not know about me is that my mum is half Burmese and that I have this wonderful heritage. One of my favourite childhood dishes my grandmother made me was Khow Suey and I am still to this day trying to make it as good as her!

Jemma Stilwell, Director of Drama


Little Shop of Horrors

Meet the staff

Jemma Stilwell

Jemma Stilwell

Titles: Director of Drama
Natalie Madison

Natalie Madison

Titles: Assistant Head of Lower School, Teacher of Drama and English
Faye Baldwin

Faye Baldwin

Titles: Teacher of Drama & English