Shipley’s theater program involves coursework as well as extracurricular rehearsals and performances.
The Lower School and Middle School theater programs focus on improvisation, script writing, and creativity. Opportunities abound for both informal and formal performances.
All Sixth Grade students take a theater course and put on a production that showcases the skills learned. Seventh and Eighth Graders have the option of choosing Theater as their Performing Arts course. In addition, they may audition for the Middle School Musical each spring.
Upper School classes perform theater exercises based on dramatic texts taken primarily from American contemporary theater. The level of sophistication increases by grade level as students learn general theater history and work with plays ranging from Greek tragedy to existential theater.
Performance opportunities in Upper School include:
- one-act plays
- an auditioned spring musical
- informal performances at assemblies
- Shakespeare or other classical productions
- Newly renovated Riely Theatre includes state of the art lighting, sound, and scenic materials. Students also have the opportunity to learn technical theater and production skills
- A new “grey box” (flexible “black box”) space in the Shipley Commons
- Theater classrooms, dressing rooms, and offices beneath Riely Theatre