Performing Arts: Theatre

Unlocking the power of self-expression.

About our Theatre Program

Steward’s theatre program emphasizes the process of presentation with a strong focus on imagination, personal expression, and creative collaboration. Theatre classes introduce students to performance skills, theatre terminology and styles, script analysis, and the fundamentals of design. The Steward School encourages students to participate in and develop an appreciation for the world of live performance.

Every year, students produce three main stage productions in the Lora M. Robins Theatre, a 500-seat proscenium theatre, each of which is predominantly student-run. These productions provide participants with numerous opportunities to get involved on stage and behind the scenes, building and painting sets, working the sound board and lights, and directing and assisting with makeup and costumes.

Lower School

The emphasis in Lower School theatre is on working as a team, building performance skills, and effectively communicating thoughts and ideas to an audience. Grade-level theatre classes develop each student’s acting ability, stage presence, and oral delivery, showcasing these learned skills in annual class plays in the BlackBox Theatre.

Middle School

In Middle School, students develop a foundation of acting, improvisation, and playwriting, with different opportunities throughout the year to perform for the student body. Students concentrate on physical and vocal exercises, improvisation, storytelling, basic approaches to scene study, and the techniques of artists who work in theatre, including actors, directors, designers, and playwrights. Sixth graders rotate through academic quarters of art, choral music, instrumental music, and theatre, while seventh and eighth graders choose the full-year fine arts elective that best allows them to express themselves.

Upper School

Upper School students may take curricular electives in theatre, offering instruction in a wide range of abilities and delving into theatre history, text interpretation and performance, and the related fields of playwriting, production, and design. These classes are designed to introduce students to the dramatic arts and to prepare dedicated students to continue their acting studies at the collegiate level.

Upper School acting courses are an exploration of different methods and styles of performing. Focus is placed on exploring various schools of thought as far as performance is concerned, and since no two actors are alike, each student will begin to develop a personal acting style. Attention is given also to meeting the needs and requirements of different types of scripts and incorporating a personal acting style into those scripts.

Upper School technical theatre is an investigation into the wide variety of arts and sciences that make up the technical (non-acting) side of live theatre. Theatre organization, safety, architecture, budgeting, scenery construction, lighting, sound engineering, scene painting, stage managing, and props management are just some of the fields encompassing the technical theatre. The class studies a variety of hands-on topics (building materials, tools, construction techniques, and mechanical drawings) and organizational topics (communicating effectively, solving problems, following rules, and working as a team).





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