Middle School Drama
Sixth Grade Drama
We read and perform several short plays in 6th grade drama, as well as sections from classic, full-length dramas. Students develop strong creative skills including directing small groups, becoming more comfortable with cold readings, memorizing short pieces, and perfecting performance techniques. Every student will have many opportunities to act, direct, and organize small groups.
Seventh Grade Drama
The 7th grade drama class uses theater games, improvisational situations, and planned drama activities to develop stronger vocal and body techniques. There will be scene work included that will be memorized and performed in front of their peers. The class is encouraged to become "team" players — ensemble actors are what we strive to build, not stars.
Eighth Grade Drama
The first quarter of th year is dedicated to the 8th Grade Play, a fully staged theater production in which every member of the class participates by singing, dancing, and acting. The remainder of the year involves electives, which are conducted in small groups and offer a wide range of theater activities such as Improv and Filmmaking. The topics covered continue to follow in the building of skills that all our courses contain: communication, imagination, and cooperation.
An annual fall event, the Eighth Grade Play is a fully staged musical collaboration between the Performing Arts and the Visual Arts Departments. Every student in eight grade has a singing, acting, and dancing role, and they all help to design, build, and decorate their set.
As Head of Middle School Trevor O'Driscoll points out, the lessons learned are much larger than the play, itself:
"Of course, as an educator I’m one of those people who truly believes that process trumps product every time. I know that what the rest of the audience and I didn’t get to see — the classmates who developed a friendship through hours of running lines during every spare moment; the student who learned how to fully project her voice; the girl who, despite getting very sick, was so worried about letting down her castmates that she somehow willed herself to make it to the final dress rehearsal; the boys who fearlessly stepped in and took on additional roles when actors were absent — is where the real magic happened. The failure and recovery, learning, and personal growth all occurred in the weeks before the house lights went down and the curtain came up."
— Trevor O'Driscoll, Head of Middle School