Each fall we study world folk tales and students develop a whole-school Winter Solstice performance that combines music, drama and dance. Come spring, every grade puts on a play, sometimes combining several grades together or each class performing individually. By adapting epic stories and novels, exploring the works of various playwrights, and creating original plays, the drama program culminates in May with an evening production by the middle school in our outdoor amphitheater.
A Roma (gypsy) camp gathering in our Solstice performance of folktales from Eastern Europe. Each year, the school-wide theme focuses on a particular culture or part of the world and broadens students’ horizons and understanding.
Students practice and compose music to accompany all the theater productions, either participating for their own class’s play or supporting a different grade’s play with their musical talent, as seen here in the middle school’s original play Madame Francesca’s Travelling Circus.
Japanese Kabuki inspired masks work as part of a yearly theme exploring the cultures of Asia and their theatrical traditions.
Students painting the back drop and set for
an end-of-year play.
Puppets of all sizes are incorporated into our productions and students learn the different techniques to manipulate marionettes, hand puppets and shadow puppets, as well as large three-person puppets. Puppetry is a great way to learn how subtle movement and focus can bring an inanimate object to life, deepening the performer’s physical self-awareness as the puppet characters enrich the story.