The Theater Arts program at Washington Montessori School offers a unique and unparalleled integrative arts experience for students at the Elementary and Middle School levels. The performance space at WMS gives students an intimate and warm environment to debut their performances to share with the school community. Students make theater at different levels of the process, from acting to lighting to creating masks and props.
At the Lower Elementary level, students participate in story theater, a blend of scripted and unscripted material, for a one-week intensive where they combine narration, acting, sound effects, simple props to create a performance for an informal sharing with parents and family. Material draws from world folk tales and origin stories of world cultures reinforcing the curriculum of the Lower Elementary level. For more about these playlets, visit the Lower Elementary Signature Experiences page.
At the Upper Elementary level, students have two opportunities to perform theatrically. Each classroom performs a Shakespeare play. Favorites include “A Midsummer Night’s Dream,” “Twelfth Night” and “Macbeth.” Additionally the students have a residency performance which is a one-week intensive to explore different aspects of the ancient cultures they study for the year. This intensive is meant to serve as a ‘sensory’ launch pad for formal study during the year. Students speak the languages, write the alphabets, compose and play the music, eat the foods of the culture of study. At the end of the week, they perform a rehearsed theatrical piece. The ancient cultures in rotation are Greece, Egypt, Rome, China, India, and Mesoamerica. For more about the Shakespeare plays and the Residency, visit the Upper Elementary Signature Experiences page.
The Middle School offers a chance to stretch the wings of the performer with two full scale productions per year to be performed for the school community. Students audition and are cast to their strengths. Students may also opt for technical jobs including, lights, sound, props, costumes, and stage managing. Past favorites have included “Aladdin,” “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory,” “Treasure Island” and “The Best Christmas Pageant Ever.” See pictures from the most recent Eighth grade play, “Oliver Twist.”