The arts program is designed to fulfill two functions in the student’s growth and development. The first is to develop an understanding of the richness of the arts, the contributions that they have made and continue to make to humankind, and the basic elements that are the foundations of visual arts, music, and theater. The second function is to offer students an opportunity to participate directly in the creative process through entry-level courses in each discipline as well as through upper level courses for those students who wish to pursue depth and mastery in a particular art. The arts curriculum is designed to allow students to develop in both the understanding and the creation of the arts.
The foundation of the student’s understanding of the arts is provided by Western Civilization: History of the Arts, an interdisciplinary course which is required for sophomores and is taught by a team of teachers representing the fields of art, music, and history. The history, cultural concepts, theories, elements, and facts presented in this course are echoed in the studio and performing classes in the analysis of works and in student project designs.
The arts curriculum also offers a rich selection of studio and performing courses in visual arts, music, and theater and focuses on building skills which will enable students to fulfill their creative visions. Students may take any entry-level course in the three disciplines, as well as pursue greater depth and skill development through upper-level courses such as the level III studio courses, the upper division performing ensembles, AP Studio Art, Theater Production II: Advanced Projects, AP Music Theory, and AP Art History.
The graduation requirement includes two semesters of arts courses, in addition to Western Civilization: History of the Arts.