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Technical Theatre Course Descriptions

Art 1-PTop of Page

Grades 9-12, year-long class

Whether drawing comes naturally to you or you struggle to draw a recognizable stick man, if you have a desire to learn how to draw and create visual art, this class is for you! In this course you will learn the basics of creating and speaking the language of Art. We will explore Art through cultures and history to better our artistic appreciation. In this class, we will focus on learning many drawing mediums and styles. Students will also learn artistic composition and design.

Art 2-PTop of Page

Grades 10-12, year-long class
Prerequisite: Art 1
If you have passed Art 1 and you are excited to learn more, then Art 2 is the class for you! In this course you will be able to develop and improve your use of familiar art techniques and will also be given the opportunity to learn new color based art mediums and methods. This class will strongly stress client art and design, composition and color theory. Art projects in the course will be more advanced and structured in design. Mural and large scale painting will be a major emphasis in this class. 

Anatomy / Physiology - PTop of Page

Grades 11-12, year-long class
Prerequisites: Completion of Biology with a C or better. If you have not passed Chemistry with a C or better, teacher approval is required.
Anatomy/Physiology is intended for the college bound student. Focus will be placed on human anatomy and physiology, as well as some comparative vertebrate physiology. Students will learn about body orientation, basic chemistry, cells and tissues, skin and body membranes, skeletal system, muscular system, nervous system with special senses, endocrine system, circulatory system with blood, body defenses, respiratory system, and digestive system including body metabolism, urinary system, reproduction and comparative dissections.

ChoreographyTop of Page

Grades 10-12, year-long class
Prerequisites: Student must have previous dance experience; preferably at least two or more years of technical dance training in any genre. Dance 1A & 1B or equivalent is required.  Freshmen must seek instructor permission. Choreography students must be concurrently enrolled in one of the following dance technique classes: Dance 2, Dance 3, Dance 4, Dance Teaching Practicum (Dance TA for any other dance class), or Dance Styles.
Imagine, create, and share your vision of dance with the world. A theoretic and applied study of the basic elements of choreography will be introduced and explored through the creation of original works. Choreography will be approached through the exploration of resources including improvisation, use of ideas, knowledge of forms, and development of the craft. Students will be exposed to various choreographic processes, terminology, and potential performance venues. Students will receive weekly assignments directed toward specific problems and dance elements; then begin to develop works with an emphasis on the relationship between manipulation of musical phrases and choreography. Students will learn to move from phrase development to the completion of a dance. They will learn to critique dances through the workshop process by observing, reflecting, discussing, evaluating, and making recommendations for revision. The culminating class project will be to collectively produce a dance production and incorporate such elements as costumes, lighting, original music, props, sets, and professional staging. Students will also learn to imaginatively use technology to support their dances and personal choreographic process. Students can expect to create three to four dances over the year with at least one being staged for audience.

Dance 1ATop of Page

Grades 9-12, semester-long class                 

Students will develop their individual knowledge, skills, abilities, behaviors, and attitudes in relation to the world of dance, their own unique identity, and the world around them through the perspective of dance. Focus will be given to learning various dance techniques, basic dance history, and expressing one’s self through movement. Students will discover their own movement potential and expand respect of self and others through the practice of studio etiquette, various class structures, and audience participation.  By exploring the field of dance natural connections to personal interests and related fields of study will develop.

Dance 1BTop of Page

Grades 9-12, semester-long class
This course is a continuation of Dance 1A and will continue to develop the individual knowledge, skills, abilities, behaviors, and attitudes in relation to the world of dance, their own unique identity, and the world around them through the perspective of dance. Critical evaluation of choreographic works will be a key element of the course. Students will be required to embody movement elements by demonstrating basic terms and techniques from various dance genre and styles. The course will also investigate dance figures and their contributions to the field. Student will cultivate an understanding of others and cultures by experiencing their dance and discover that dance is a universal language. Eight to ten of the following genres of dance will be explored in Dance 1A & 1B each year: ballet, jazz, modern, tap, hip-hop, break dancing, contemporary, Pilates, Hawaiian, Maori, Polynesian, Irish, Middle Eastern Belly Dancing, Indian, West African, European Folk, Hmong, and other traditional genres.

Dance 2 - PTop of Page

Grades 9-12, year-long class
Prerequisites: Student must have some previous dance experience; preferably at least one-two years of technical dance training in any style, Dance 1A and 1B are a prerequisite and teacher recommendation is needed by audition. Dancers will be required to provide their own dance shoes.

This course will be a technique-based class that will challenge students to become well-rounded dancers in numerous dance genres with major focus on styles studied at the university level including ballet, jazz, tap, and modern.  Dancers will also be exposed to a wide variety of additional styles and introduced to local artists who study and teach these dance techniques on a regular basis including hip-hop, contemporary, break dancing, ethnic dance style (African, Irish, Hawaiian, Middle Eastern Belly Dancing, etc…), traditional folk dances, and social dance (Ballroom, Latin, Swing, etc…).  Both male and female techniques will be supported and close attention will be paid to current trends in the world of dance. Dancers will learn the traditional class etiquette for each genre, the appropriate attire for class and performance practices. Research will be conducted on current dance figures and the origins of each dance technique. Dancers will also learn how to become healthy life-long dancers with an introduction to the basic somatic practices that support performing artists. This year-long course satisfies the UC and CSU admission requirement for Fine Art, Area “F”.

Digital Photography - PTop of Page

Grades 9-12, year-long class
Come explore the world of digital photography! This course provides an introduction to the fascinating technology that is catapulting the photographic world. We'll discuss the basics of digital photography equipment and use industry standard digital editing software (Adobe PhotoShop CS6), camera equipment and studio lighting. Students also have introductory instruction in the history of photography, design, rules of composition, and career options in photography, along with commercial and personal applications. Some projects include Landscape, Outdoor Portrait, Studio Portrait and Product Photography. Whether you're new to photography or a long-time photographer, this class will provide opportunities to hone your digital photography skills.

Electronic Music CompositionTop of Page

Grades 9-12, year-long class
Electronic Music Composition is designed to give students the necessary tools and techniques to create contemporary electronic music in a variety of styles. Students will learn the history of electronic music with listening examples that highlight the important people, technology, and techniques associated with electronic music styles. The lessons will include videos describing musical, DAW (Digital Audio Workstations), and synthesis techniques. There will also be a research and analysis component in which students learn to listen critically and adapt to changes in technology and public musical taste. Pro Tools is the primary DAW used in the course and some online programs will be introduced.  Students will be allowed to bring a personal laptop and use their own software to complete certain projects. The course teaches musical topics like melody, rhythm and harmony within the framework of a DAW, starting with an introduction to common scales and rhythms and the developing more complex musical elements throughout the course.

Electronic / RoboticsTop of Page

Grades 9-12, year-long class
Electronics/Robotics introduces the basic skills needed for many careers in electronics and related fields and prepares a technical foundation for intermediate and advanced engineering courses. The course covers the operations and applications of basic DC and AC circuits consisting of resistors, capacitors, inductors, transformers and diodes. Students learn to use common test instruments including volt/ohm meters, oscilloscopes and signal generators for circuit analysis and troubleshooting.  Students construct a radio-controlled car as they learn circuit board construction techniques, trouble shooting skills, basic circuit analysis and radio wave propagation theory.  Robotics uses a hands-on approach to introduce the basic concepts in robotics, students will work in teams to build and test increasingly more complex LEGO-based mobile robots, culminating in an end-of-term team robot contest. Teamwork, critical thinking and problem solving are emphasized.

Principles of Engineering - P (POE)Top of Page

Grades 10-12, year-long class
PrerequisiteCompletion of Math 1 or equivalent

The second course in the Engineering sequence, POE is designed for 10th or 11th grade students. This survey course exposes students to major concepts they’ll encounter in a post-secondary engineering course of study. Topics include mechanisms, energy, statics, materials, and kinematics. Students develop problem-solving skills, and apply their knowledge of research and design to create solutions to various challenges, document their work and communicate solutions. Students will work extensively with VEX Robotics kits and learn to program with RobotC. Strong math skills will be beneficial.

Recording ArtsTop of Page

Grades 9-12, year-long class
Recording Arts introduces basic audio for use in live performance and recording settings. Topics include basic sound characteristics, microphone use, recording technique, and live sound reinforcement. Pro Tools, Garage Band and Logic X and several online programs are introduced with an emphasis put on using Pro Tools to record, mix and master recordings.  This course also details the functions of, and relationships between, the mixing console and the Pro Tools digital audio workstation. Students learn how different microphones, signal processors, and other technologies are employed in a variety of applications for the audio industry: music recording, live mixing, and other applications. Student from within the class rehearse and perform during class giving students authentic opportunities to operate live sound and record. Through this course students are provided with an opportunity to work on a project from start to finish utilizing all the technologies and procedures they have learned. This will include recording live music groups, choral and band ensembles, and possibly recording off site.

Senior Project / PortfolioTop of Page

Grade 12, year-long class
Prerequisite: major advisor approval
In this course students will work with a teacher or individual Major Advisors to develop and complete a year-long project or portfolio for presentation. Assignments will be given specific guidelines depending on the student interests and field of study, future goals will also be considered. Student will have the opportunity to find, research, design, implement, document, and present a large, in depth project that utilizes all the knowledge, skills, and abilities they have developed thus far.

StagecraftTop of Page

Grades 9-12, year-long class (offered alternating years with Theatre Design)

Prerequisite: Concurrent enrollment in Performing Arts Foundation class and Program Director permission for freshmen; Performing Arts Foundation, Theatre 1, or equivalent.

Stagecraft is a class created to develop and build specific skills within the technical theatre crafts. Students will learn hands on how to do the craft and artistry involved in creating live theatre. Students will learn all the basics and tricks of the trade in makeup, costuming, lighting, crewing, special effects, set construction, scenic artistry, and property creation. Various professionals and guest teachers will be utilized to enrich the course work and material covers. Crewing productions at least once each semester will be a requirement of this class.

Theatre 1 and Theatre 2 (Acting) - PTop of Page

College Prep, Grades 10-12, year-long class

course names are being reassigned            

Prerequisites: Performing Arts Foundations and teacher approval

Theatre 1 & 2 will introduce students to the concepts and principals associated with a career in theatre performing arts. Students will 1) develop their craft through exercises (including, but not limited to: Stanislavski, Linklater, Meisner, Hagen, Adler, Suzuki), 2) explore a variety of actor college and career pathways, 3) perfect audition technique and materials, 4) perform classical and contemporary monologues and scenes, and 5) observe, analyze, and deconstruct performances of peers and professionals by attending and reviewing productions. Students will perform their best work at the Spring Theatre Showcase.

Theatre 3Top of Page

Grades 11-12, Year-long class
Prerequisites: Theatre 1, 2, and teacher approval                   
This course teaches the basics of the craft of directing, including script analysis, characterization, casting, blocking, rehearsal and performance. Students learn the tool of the director's breakdown and its uses in preparing a play for production, concentrating on scenes from well-known plays and original work. The emphasis is on conversion of dramatic texts into emotionally effective performances employing different styles and acting technique. Students also learn to make connections between their own inner lives and the work they direct, as well as to apply the lessons of society, history, and current events to the text at hand. Everyone acts as well as directs. As a final project, each student casts and directs a scene of his or her own choosing.

Theatre 4Top of Page

Grade 12, Year-long class

Prerequisites: Theatre 1, 2, 3, and teacher approval
Theatre 4 will alternate between three different year-long course materials (Acting the Classics, Playwriting, or Shakespeare) based upon the wishes and needs of the student and teacher. ACTING THE CLASSICS: Utilizing Theatre 2 as the basis of the Stanislavski System acting technique, we will further read, investigate style, and discover the playwright’s message through the ages. Each quarter we will fully engage in a classical genre: Classical Greek Theatre, Renaissance English Theatre (focus on Shakespeare), Neoclassical Theatre, and Modern Theatre. Scenes will culminate in a final performance during the Winter/Spring Festival of the Arts, or PLAYWRITING: This module will explore the development of ideas and images into plays for the stage. Throughout the course, we will analyze the plays and process of exploration of the creative art of the playwright. We will focus dramatic structure of the Elements of Drama and develop ideas into plays.  We will begin with attention to Dramaturgy and the Community. Then we will focus much of our attention to developing and writing short plays/scenes and work with the Acting and Directing classes. Because playwriting is a process of making language physical, some of your writing will be read aloud and staged in order to discover what works on the stage, or SHAKESPEARE: This module will dive into the life of William Shakespeare including his early years, his family, and his writing career as well as learning about Renaissance England and the effect outside forces had on Shakespeare’s plays. The course will focus on the theme of adaptation and Shakespeare as an adaptor, as well as modern adaptations of his works. We will investigate the alternative theory presented by the Folger Library in Washington, D.C . that “Shakespeare” indeed was Edward de Vere, the 17th Earl of Oxford. Students will read six plays during the year. Each play will have a specific project / paper to accompany it. Students will also read and analyze Shakespearean sonnets. We may present our work at the Fall/Spring Gala of the Arts.

Theatre Design (year 2)Top of Page

Grades 10-12, Year-long class

Prerequisite: Performing Arts Foundation & Theatre 1, Stagecraft, or equivalent.
Theatre Design is a class created to develop and build specific artistic skills within the technical theatre crafts. Students will learn hands on how to do design for live theatre. Students will be exposed to the basics of all areas and then be allowed to specialize in a focus area of their choosing: makeup/hair design, costume design, lighting design, stage management, dramaturgy, sound/special effects design, scenic design/artistry, and property design. Various professionals and guest teachers will be utilized to enrich the course work and material covers. Designing or crewing for productions at least once each semester will be a requirement of this class.

Theatre ProductionTop of Page

Grades 10-12, year-long class

Prerequisite: Previous enrollment in Performing Art Foundation, Stagecraft, Theatre 1, or equivalent. Students are encouraged to choose a design or technical emphasis and will work one on one with an instructor on productions. Task and titles will be assigned based on experience and the interview application process.

The Inspire Production Team (Theatre Production) will be a service oriented team created to liaison with Visual & Performing Arts Department clubs to accurately produce and document major public events. In addition, its members will have the opportunity to design (being giving priority on positions) and manage theatrical events throughout the year for Inspire. Students will also gain valuable computer and design skills working in programs such as Word, Excel, Illustrator and the Internet. The Inspire Production Team will work specifically to help achieve the department’s mission: Inspire School of Arts & Science’s Visual and Performing Arts Program provides a creative, challenging, and nurturing environment that offers passionate and focused students professional preparation for higher education and life-long learning in the arts.

Musical Theatre 1-PTop of Page

College Prep, Grades 9-12, Year-long class

Musical Theatre 1 focuses on develop your singing/acting/movement skills in a variety of musical theatre performing styles. This class lays the foundation for musical theatre song performance through learning to use your own personal voice type to sing different kinds of songs, learning to analyze the lyrics to find out how to communicate the story through vocal and physical expression, and learning to develop the character in order to bring the song to life through both singing and acting. Students will begin to build their audition portfolio, and develop auditioning skills. The class forms an ensemble performing group that learns and performs songs from a variety of musicals, from Vaudeville to today's Broadway shows. Students will also learn to overcome stage fright, and build their confidence through in-class solo and small ensemble performances. Students will performance in the Inspire Gala, and will learn songs throughout the year to perform in the spring Musical Theatre Showcase. May be taken concurrently with Performing Arts Foundations.

Musical Theatre 2-PTop of Page

College Prep, Grades 10-12, Year-long class
Prerequisite: Musical Theatre 1 or permission of instructor
Musical Theatre 2 builds on the skills and knowledge learned in Musical Theatre 1. Students will learn more advanced techniques for singing, dancing and acting, utilizing scenes and songs from Broadway musicals, still using an in-class “acting the song” workshop atmosphere. Through work on song performance, students will study significant musical theatre shows and songs, practicing and performing songs from many of them. They will learn about major musical theatre song and show writers, and how musical theatre has grown and changed over time. Work is also done on auditioning skills, and on building individual audition portfolios. The class is a performing ensemble that will work on singing and dancing numbers to perform in the Inspire Gala and the spring Musical Theatre Showcase. As students develop through their work at this level, they will gain important performing skills in ensemble and solo singing and acting techniques that will prepare them for Musical Theatre 3. (May be repeated)

Musical Theatre 3 (IMT3)Top of Page

Grades 11-12, Year-long class        
Prerequisites: Musical Theatre 1 and 2 (may be concurrent with Musical Theatre 2), or teacher permission. By audition only
Musical Theatre 3 is also the Inspire Musical Theatre Touring Troupe, IMT3, and is an advanced class where students will prepare material for performances throughout the year. This class is a culmination of 3 years of training in the singing, acting and movement skills necessary to perform with maturity and confidence, both as an ensemble and in solo work. Students will advance in the application of music reading and the understanding of musical score markings, as they apply to how the music affects the communication of a song. Students will continue to develop their audition portfolios, and continue to work on how to effectively prepare and perform at auditions. During this year of study, students also learn to analyze an entire musical, learning to build the performance of a song through an in-depth study of the story, the characters, and their interaction with each other and the audience, with the goal of entering as wholly as possible into the character and the story in the performance of the songs. Performance numbers will include contemporary and traditional musical theatre repertoire. Emphasis is placed on creating unified performances, both musically and dramatically. Extra time is required for community performances.  Auditions are required. (May be repeated)