Admissions for Talented Students in the Performing Arts

Being a performing arts specialist school we strive for excellence within the Performing Arts. As part of this excellence agenda we provide an admissions programme for students who have the talent and commitment to become part of our school community as a specialist in either Dance, Drama or Music. The Admissions process is detailed clearly in the school’s policy and 10% of each year group are considered as our elite students in the arts and are placed in a form group together.

This is a very exciting opportunity for prospective students to join a group who will adopt a specialised extended curriculum throughout their time here at Cockburn. This will include accessing and engaging with specialist arts provision and external professionals and they will be given other opportunities such as trips and events that that will build their knowledge and professionalism within the arts. To be considered for this application route please see the supplementary application form and the audition requirement details.

Supplementary Application Form.

Admission Audition Process

To be considered for this admissions program students are expected to attend an audition that takes place at Cockburn school in November. Students can be considered as a specialist in Drama/Dance or in Music. If you believe you have the required skill level in all 3 disciplines please feel free to tick all boxes on the supplementary form. Parents are welcome to remain in the school building whilst prospective students are undertaking the audition process but will not be allowed to watch the auditions take place. This is to ensure that each student has the chance to perform to the very best of their ability.


Drama and Dance Audition Process


Physical warm up and short technical sequence.

Students will be given a short motif to learn and perform. There will also be a creative task and students be required to perform this as part of a small group.


Workshop style warm up

Students will be expected to take part in a character creation exercise where they will be given a stimulus and asked to rehearse as part of a group. Students will create a short performance in response to the stimulus given and perform this with their group. Use of language delivery, body language, gestures and facial expressions will be important.

If you choose the Dance/Drama route please be prepared to audition in both disciplines. Please do not worry if you are stronger in one than the other, this will be taken into consideration. Please wear loose fitting black clothing when attending the audition.


Minimum Grade requirement on your chosen instrument is Grade 2 or equivalent. We will also consider students who believe they have a very strong singing ability.

Students will be asked to identify and clap given rhythms to check time keeping and rhythmic notation accuracy.

Please prepare a piece to play on your instrument prior to the audition which will be assessed by our music staff. You will also be required to take part in a group song that will assess your ability to work alongside others and finally undertake a Listening test – this will check your analysis and interpretation skills.

Please note that to qualify for this route into Cockburn, you must choose Cockburn School as your first choice when applying for High Schools. 


Visit the Admissions and Appeals page for more information on the Cockburn School Admissions process