The Drama program at Friends Select is meant to educate, entertain, inform and transform. Students engage in authentic project-based learning in a safe, supportive, yet challenging environment. They learn to take risks as artists through the art of collaboration. Careful attention to process results in a product they can all be proud of. We also take advantage of the city's vibrant theater community by attending live performances and hosting artists from the Walnut Street, Philly Young Playwrights, Hedgerow Theatre, and others.
The Curtain Rises
Lower School students can participate in plays via the After School Program, which puts on two shows a year. In second grade, the students write and produce their own play, complete with sets and costumes.
Take the Stage
Middle School students can choose Drama for their performance elective. These classes are intentionally small and an audition helps determine placement. Additionally, Middle School students may participate in the annual play, which is a large-scale production each winter.In 5/6 Drama, the emphasis is on creative drama and storytelling. Students perform stories for Kindergarten students in the winter and a showcase of folktales in the spring. In 7/8 Drama, the emphasis is more on craft. Students delve into costume/set design, playwriting, and monologue work. We perform at an LS Assembly and then a short play for the MS community.
Artistic Exploration and Experimentation
The Upper School Drama course includes instruction in a broad range of skills, including the acting craft, direction, production, set building and design, screenwriting and playwriting, and developing a critical approach to theater. Students produce a variety of work both independently and in groups throughout each year.
Additionally, there is an annual Playwriting Competition among Upper School students, where the winning entry gets a mainstage performance. Students also participate in the Greater Philadelphia Cappies, a theater journalism program which recognizes excellence in high school theater.The student body produces several Open Mic Nights during the year which highlight an incredible depth of independent student creativity, dramatically and otherwise. There is a student-run Thespian Troupe club in Upper School as well, which can be fulfilling outlets for students who unable to participate in the drama courses.