Even as a sophomore, Hannah Curhan ’23 still benefited from the mentorship of her Middle School Drama Teacher, Ms. Crewdon. During the winter, Crewdon showed Curhan an email from the METG (Massachusetts Educational Theater Guild), calling for submissions to its first-ever monologue contest.
Students may elect to participate in several performance ensembles. These groups, Chorus, Chamber Music, Jazz Band and the BB&N Players give students the opportunity to use their talents outside of the classroom and perform at community events.
The Chorus is open to all students who enjoy singing. Chorus performs at WinterFest and the Spring Concert, but may also perform at assemblies and at other special occasions. The literature of Chorus ranges from classical to Broadway, from classic Rock and Roll to contemporary, with the accent on fine arrangements suitable for middle school voices. All music is in the form of choral octavos from two to four parts. Student interest or special areas of expertise will often be taken into account when choosing the repertoire of Chorus. Emphasis includes vocal hygiene and basic technical skills, posture, accuracy of pitch, enjoyment of singing, and a commitment to the group process and rehearsal skills.
Jazz Band is offered to 7th and 8th grade students by audition. No previous experience in playing jazz is required. The aim of this class is to explore this unique American art form, characterized by complex, syncopated rhythm and improvisations. Students learn to interpret traditional notation and make it “swing” and to improvise melodies.Through this course students experience a spirited aspect of American culture, are challenged by new musical concepts and work at developing their own risktaking skills.The group’s work is shared with the BB&N community in at least two performances during the year.
The Chamber Music program at the Middle School is designed to give students the opportunity to learn the art of ensemble playing. An elective offering for students with some experience in playing a musical instrument, the program tries to be flexible to accommodate students with a broad range of musical backgrounds. Acceptance into the class is based on ability, numbers of students, and instrumentation. Ensemble playing develops critical listening skills and fosters a deepened appreciation for problem solving through group interaction. The program also offers opportunities for performance, which helps students develop poise and confidence.
The BB&N Players
The BB&N Players, an Improv Troupe, is part of the BB&N Community. The troupe assists the school in many ways including serving as assembly emcees and assisting faculty with skits for various school events such as the read a thon, community service and sports assembles. The Players perform two improv shows during the year. Seventh graders audition in May for the following school year.