Our growing Drama program has been specially developed for students across the Lower, Middle, and Upper Schools.
Students participate in classes that result in dramatic productions. In addition to these curricular experiences, Park produces an annual musical and two dramatic productions that utilize talent from all our grade levels.
Our students are fully involved in all aspects of these productions, from the acting our audience watches from their seats, to those key elements of stagecraft that are not as obvious but just as critical, such as set building, costuming, direction, lighting design, and special effects.
Drama provides many other benefits to our students. In addition to building their confidence, it enhances their public speaking abilities, teamwork and collaboration, planning and program management, creativity, and complex problem solving. It also deepens their sense of empathy and tolerance as they immerse themselves in the characters and stories of people from different backgrounds and life experiences.
Many of our students discover or grow their musical talents at Park.
Lower, Middle, and Upper School have their own instrumental ensembles and all students are welcome to join. With support from The Elster-Goldstein Family Music Fund's generous endowment, about one-third of our students take private music lessons during the school day. Beginning in 2nd Grade, students can study a string instrument with a wide array of instrumental choices open to them in Middle and Upper School. In addition to ensembles and orchestra, students may form smaller groups based on their current instrumental interests. Each year our orchestra performs in many different venues, from campus events, to local town concerts, to an annual pre-Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra Concert at Kleinhans. Some of our students also participate in the New York State All-State String Orchestras.
Humbly, we are the ideal place for students of all experience levels to learn to sing. There are three "come one, come all" choral ensembles, in which students develop vocal technique and musical literacy, as well as learn the joy of singing as a group. Participation in these ensembles includes small-group voice lessons.
Students looking for more individualized attention or hoping to study the performing arts in college can elect to join our Park Vocal Studio; take part in master classes with distinguished guest artists; participate in self-led, tailored independent study courses; and give student recitals in our Theatre.
General Music Curriculum
Lower School students learn the fundamentals of music through play. Singing, playing instruments, movement, drama, and speech are all incorporated into the music classroom. Students develop tonal memory, gross and fine motor skills, and musical literacy through a combination of activities, including playing unpitched percussion instruments and soprano recorders.
We own a classroom set of concert ukuleles, obtained through a grant from the Park Parents Association and a set of M-Audio keyboards obtained through a STEAM grant. Students in Middle School music classes learn about western classical and global music traditions in a fun and hands-on way. Using a combination of instruments, computers, iPads, and movement, students explore a variety of musical traditions and improve their musical literacy and knowledge of music history.
Upper School students study music history from the Renaissance era through the modern day. Students also explore music as it relates to current events, with a special focus on music created for social justice. They learn to read music in the treble and bass clefs and utilize this knowledge in the playing of the piano, xylophones, and ukuleles. This course gives our students an opportunity to create their own music as a means of self-expression.