Theatre Arts
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The Theatre Arts department of the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools is home to approximately 65 professional, certified theatre arts teachers. We offer an extensive array of classes in theatre arts, which are all an essential part of learning.

Curriculum

The Theatre Arts curriculum is included in  the North Carolina Course of Study, which is directly aligned with the National Standards for Arts Education. Middle school students have the opportunity to explore theatre arts through an arts education wheel encompassing the various arts disciplines. High School opportunities include courses in theatre and technical theatre as well as additional advanced level courses and in-depth study through Honors, Advanced Placement, and International Baccalaureate Classes.

Community Collaborations

Partnerships between the Performing Arts Department, Charlotte's ArtsTeach, and Community Arts Organizations allow visiting artists the opportunity to share their expertise and experience in the classroom. In addition to regular theatre arts classes, students participate in field trips, on-site endeavors, and workshops by local actors and organizations.

Shared Vision

The goals of the Charlotte-Mecklenburg schools are supported by the theatre arts department in all academic areas. The arts are infused in all content areas and provide motivation for students and linkages of understanding across the curriculum. Theatre Arts also provides an outlet for self-expression and artistic pleasure by engaging a student's attention and encouraging their creativity and individuality.

Strong instructional programs, a wealth of community resources, and the potential for continued growth combine to make the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools a premier model for Theatre Arts programs in the new millennium.  

About Theatre Arts

Theatre Arts, the imagined and enacted world of human beings, is one of the primary ways students in Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools learn about life - about actions and consequences, about customs and beliefs, about others and themselves. Offered at the majority of high schools and middle schools throughout the district, and including two elementary performing arts magnet programs, theatre arts classes are taught by certified theatre arts teachers. Additionally, at the high school level, classes are offered in technical theatre, offering students a window into the world of backstage.

As students study Theatre Arts, they begin to view and construct dramatic works as metaphorical visions of life that embrace meanings, juxtaposition, ambiguity, and varied interpretations. By creating, performing, analyzing, and critiquing dramatic performances, students develop a deeper understanding and acceptance of personal issues and a broader world-view that includes international issues. They learn to see the created world of theatre through the eyes of the playwright, actor, designer, and director. Students use drama as a means of confidently expressing themselves, thus developing their “personal voice.”  

Knowledge and skills in acting, performing, ensemble, directing, writing, theatre literature and history, and technical theatre are cultivated along with the resulting insight into using the knowledge and skills in everyday life situations.

 Theatre arts in our schools teaches the basic life skills, thinking skills and personal qualities which:

  • develop an understanding of the ideas, attitudes, beliefs, and feelings of diverse people in different times throughout history as communicated through literature and theatre.
  • employ techniques for teaching and learning through developmental processes and activity-oriented methods.
  • promote higher level critical and creative thinking skills, problem recognition and problem solving, intuition, examination and implementation of conflict resolution, and the learning of reading, writing, math and other areas of the curriculum.
  • assist in focusing the emotions for controlled use, strengthening the imagination for creative self-expression, disciplining the voice and body for purposeful use, expanding intellectual horizons to include aesthetic awareness, developing self-discipline, and providing a basic understanding and critical appreciation of all the theatre arts.
  • involve making connections between theatre arts and other art forms, other curriculum areas, dramatic media, and the related use of technology including numbers and data.
  • provide an intense study of what playwrights seek to convey and how this is intensified through theatrical production, thus giving students insights into countless aspects of the diverse and changing world.
  • include the reading, viewing, listening, researching, writing, speaking, preparing to perform, performing, and directing of traditional and experimental theatrical forms, as well as, the accompanying aspects of technical production.
  •  engage students in the creative process and the practical application of theatre techniques (such as observing, considering possibility, and communicating) which students can use in studying other areas of the curriculum and for life-long learning.
  • and enable students to function and communicate more proficiently, work independently as a member of a team, to value the individual contributions of others, and to learn virtually any subject matter in a more dynamic way.