WT’s Performing Arts curriculum is designed to assist students in developing the vocabulary, skills, and attitudes necessary for a high level of accomplishment and a deep level of understanding and appreciation of music, dance, and theater arts. Students have the opportunity to perform in Evenings of the Arts, the Winter Performance, and the Spring Performance, as well as the Middle School musical, Upper School musical, Upper School play and One Act plays.
Explore Performing Arts by division below.
Winchester Thurston School’s Performing Arts department believes that the arts and life are inseparable. For this reason, the School’s Core Values -- Community, Empathy, Equity and Inclusion, Integrity, and Intellectual Courage -- are rooted in our performance materials. We work with students to help them understand the social, political, historical, and cultural context behind various works, and to process and relate these themes to their lives today. Through this exploration, our students are exposed to a mosaic of identities and cultures.
The school’s Mission is the guiding principle in how we approach opportunities to teach and learn. Through the performing arts, students develop higher levels of empathy and ethical responsibility for their world. And, through quality performances, we strive to help our students and audiences embrace their responsibility to create change by understanding the past and celebrating the possibilities of our future.
Lower School students participate in dance and music, and have the option to perform in Orchestra and Chorus. The dance program is a child-centered approach designed to expand creativity through movement and self-expression, while the music program is a child-centered program with an Orff and Kodaly emphasis. There are five objectives in music in each grade level that are thematic and sequential: singing, playing, creating, movement, and performing.
Orchestra provides an ensemble experience for string players and wind and percussion instruments, and the Chorus consists of fourth and fifth grade students.
Students take one trimester each of dance, drama, and music during each of their three years in the Middle School. In addition to the required curricular courses, the Performing Arts department provides opportunities for students to choose to participate in our performance ensembles, chorus, orchestra, and dance ensemble. Students may also audition for roles in the Middle School musical.
Upper School students can take courses ranging from Songwriting to Acting and Script Analysis that emphasize the historical and theoretical foundations of music, dance and theater arts. In addition to exploring a myriad of performing opportunities, students come to view the arts through a number of different lenses, acting as creator, interpreter, and critic.
Performance-based ensembles are offered for students who have the desire to perform outside of the classroom. These ensembles include the Jazz Band, Orchestra, Choir, Guitar Ensemble, and Dance Ensemble. Students also have the opportunity to perform in musicals and plays.