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New drama teacher for a Classical Education School! (help)

  • 1.  New drama teacher for a Classical Education School! (help)

    Posted 06-21-2021 12:42
    Hey friends!

    Starting this fall I will be teaching theatre at a classical education school (woot woot). It's also a Christian school (*ohhh ahhh*). Basically, my options for shows/plays will be limited and I'm wondering if anyone has taught within the classical education model before and has any advice/ideas/resources for teachers? I'm teaching 5th-12th grade! Thanks so much!

    Warmly,
    Savannah

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    Savannah Hard
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  • 2.  RE: New drama teacher for a Classical Education School! (help)

    Posted 06-22-2021 09:17
    Congratulations on your position!  I teach in a public school, but I am surprisingly not far from your situation: we are very small and very conservative. I too have to screen heavily  the shows and materials that I choose.  Lucky for me however, because my students and community's average exposure to performing arts is very limited (mostly my students only know of High School Musical, Grease, and Hamilton, thanks to Disney Plus) plus we had a nonexistent program up until I started working with students, I had no set "expectations" as to the shows that were performed on our stage. I've been pretty fortunate with my cast size and talent lately, that I haven't had to dig too hard the past few years but here is what I have found along my way...and probably where I will return soon after I graduate some large groups.

    I started with Pioneer Drama, https://www.pioneerdrama.com/.  Most shows are geared for Elementary and Middle, but I have performed a few of their musicals with high school students, and have found much success. The more mature the kids, the more "mature" the shows can seem. You've got to pick through a bit, but most of the shows are really cute.  I recommend "Headless Horseman" and "The Taming of Katy Lou."

    Next, I have used quite a bit of Beat by Beat press' materials. Love their teaching guides, I also have a vocal warmup track set from them that was a game changer for us since I am not a music teacher or piano player!  And their shows look fun too, the music sounds great, but I haven't performed any yet: https://www.bbbpress.com/.

    Next, not sure if you have heard of The Skit Guys or not, but their material can be purchased for monologues and small skits, all Christian based, but really have some range of emotion and topics: https://skitguys.com/. I have used a few of their pieces for monologue competitions and classroom activities.

    Next, I follow Maverick Musicals a bit through email. Their shows have always appealed to me, and are primarily written for "younger audiences and younger performers" which lends much more favorable in the content department.   And that being said, I recommend searching the larger publishers using "young audience" or what not filters in your search! Haven't produced one of Maverick's yet, but I always check out what they have to offer in my search: https://www.maverickmusicals.com/play-category/new-release/

    And finally, I came across this site searching hard one day, and I am in love with some of their content, very Christian based, think more church pageant style.  Not sure if I could get away with it in a public system, but it may work for you.  I adore the idea behind their show Not Your Average Joe https://littlebigstuff.com/musicals/, the closest we would ever get to Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat anyway! Ha!

    Hope this help, also, feel free to reach out if you have other questions.

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    Analiese Hamm
    ECHS Drama Director
    Echols County High School
    Statenville
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  • 3.  RE: New drama teacher for a Classical Education School! (help)

    Posted 06-22-2021 09:56
    This was so incredibly helpful! Excited to fully explore all of these resources, thank you!!!

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    Savannah Hard
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  • 4.  RE: New drama teacher for a Classical Education School! (help)

    Posted 06-22-2021 11:28

    Dear Savannah,
    Congrats on your new position!! My daughter taught Theatre at a Classically oriented school for one year, and I learned they are very classic literature based! Her HS play that year was Mark Twain's only play called "Is He Dead." It is a farce and very comical! I have also leaned toward classic stories with my Middle schoolers through the years. I would suggest plays like Charlotte's Web, The Secret Garden, Tom Sawyer, The Little Princess, and Little Women. There are all kinds of versions of all these plays, as well as musical versions. Also, become a member of Dramanotebook.com!! That is my all time favorite site with all kinds of scripts of fairy tales and Shakespeare. 

    "break a leg!"
    Suzanne "Mama" Craig 



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    Suzanne "Mama" Craig
    MS/HS Theatre/Speech
    Lipscomb Academy
    Nashville, TN
    Suzanne.Craig@Lipscomb.Edu
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  • 5.  RE: New drama teacher for a Classical Education School! (help)

    Posted 06-22-2021 13:15
    Thanks so much Suzanne! I really appreciate it!

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    Savannah Hard
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