The festival movement has been in existence for over 80 years and is a competitive, non-profit making worldwide organisation. There are music, Dance and Speech & Drama Festivals throughout the world and WordWorks Studio prepares, and enters, many of their students for local festivals. The Watford Festival is in March and a smaller entry is made at the Ruislip and Northwood Festival in May.
It offers students the opportunity to perform with other competitors in front of an audience and be professionally adjudicated and awarded marks for their achievements. Medals and cups are given to the most successful. All competitors receive certificates and comment sheets after their performance.
There are classes in Verse Speaking, Sight and Prepared Reading, Choral Speaking, Acting and many other disciplines. Each student is entered according to age and this will affect the choice of material to be performed, some of the classes have set pieces, others are ‘own choice’.
The festival movement is immense. It gives the student the opportunity and experience of performing on a stage and communicating with a large audience. They can learn to appreciate the mastery of other performers and gain from receiving constructive criticism and feedback.
It helps build confidence, self-esteem and invaluable performance skills and many of our older students so love the whole experience that they continue to enter as adults long after they have left school. It is a different, although equally valuable, experience from that gained by doing an exam.
All the Speech & Drama students are prepared and entered for one class, usually Verse Speaking. The Speech & Communication students may do a class such as Prose Reading and many of the private students enter a whole range of classes.
Entries for the festival must be made months in advance so knowing the date of birth of each student is essential. We must also check that we have the correct spelling of every name. Parents could help by double-checking the details at Reception when their child checks in for their lesson.
Although we co-operate and help in every way possible, WordWorks Studio does not run the Festival and is only a competitor like everyone else. We are unable to change class times in the Festival programme. The dates for the Festival will be known well in advance, but we cannot control the actual programming. It is advisable to keep the Festival dates free, if at all possible, until the full programme is published.