Performing Arts

 

The Waynflete Performing Arts Department believes that an arts education is fundamental to the intellectual, aesthetic, and personal development of our students. A diverse program of curricular and cocurricular Performing Arts offerings introduces foundational skills to all while furthering the growth of students who wish to involve themselves at a deeper level. We believe that all students can achieve in the performing arts, and our mission is to instill in our students a lifelong appreciation of and involvement in the arts.

The Middle School performing arts program includes a three-year curriculum of formal classes, which meet twice a week and focus on dance, drama, general music, and production technology/costuming, and an array of performing ensembles that rehearse twice a week. Performing arts workshops and private music lessons are also available in the fee-based Afterschool Enrichment program.

Grades 6 and 7 Classes

In formal classes that meet twice a week, students gain skills and experience in various performing arts disciplines. Over the two-year span, students spend one full semester in each of the following: dance, drama, general music, and production technology/costuming. These four classes are exploratory, experiential, and connected thematically. An informal sharing for peers celebrates the end of each semester of exploration.

Grade 8 Classes

Theatre 8 is a year-long, experiential class that meets three times in a two-week cycle and is thematically tied to the integrated English, History and Seminar programs. Students apply their skills as expressive performers and theatre makers, make connections across their academic experience, and strengthen their sense of community. Eighth graders explore workshop leadership, ensemble building, staging and performing children’s theatre, and develop skills in public speaking, playwriting, and acting, as they work toward a collaborative full-grade Performance Event in June.

Grades 6–8 Ensembles

Middle School students also join performing ensembles that rehearse twice a week.

Chamber Orchestra is open to string and wind players interested in creating and performing in small ensembles. Students will help to choose the repertoire to be explored including both classical music and contemporary music. Pieces may be adapted and/or arranged for the instrumentation available. Students will prepare music for the Winter and Spring Concerts as well as informal performances at assemblies, sharing days, and special events.

Chorus welcomes anyone who loves to sing, and no prior musical experience is required. Singers will form a cohesive community while exploring great music from a variety of styles. Students will gain and grow skills in vocal technique, score reading, part singing, movement for singers, and ensemble performance. Students will prepare music for the evening Winter and Spring Concerts and performances at assemblies, sharing days, and special events.

Jazz Band is for musicians interested in playing jazz in an ensemble setting. The focus is on improvisation and jazz styles. All instrumentation and proficiency levels are welcome, however, students are expected to have their own instruments and to prepare music outside of rehearsal time. The Jazz Band will perform in formal and informal settings: Winter and Spring Concerts in the evening, assemblies, sharing days, and special events.

Dance/Movement students will gain basic knowledge and training in dance styles and movement skills essential for Musical Theater Dance. Students will participate in all class activities, including warm-up, strength and stretching exercises, learning/executing/creating movement phrases and a final performance presentation. Students will share their work during an in an informal school day performance.

Ukulele and Guitar students explore music from diverse styles and traditions. Students will create a self-accompanied song repertoire while building skills in chord-reading, strumming, finger-picking, and “classical” style ukulele, and ukulele solos; and strumming techniques. Guitars and ukuleles and guitars will be provided. Students will share their work during an informal school day performance.

World Drumming students will refine music skills, coordination, rhythmic accuracy while participating in a collaborative “drum circle” setting. Students will use assorted drums, stick and hand percussion instruments, and hand clapping. Previous musical experience is not required. Students will share their work during an in an informal school day performance.