Theater

The theater program at KPS changed my life.

I never thought I had what it takes to be on a stage, to pour myself into a character, to be in the spotlight for more than a few minutes. But I discovered a passion in myself that I didn’t know existed. The experience I had in theater opened my eyes to the fulfillment and excitement that comes from live performance. I was challenged, I learned, I grew, I made amazing friends and I had fun doing it. -Asha Fradkin '14

KPS On Stage

For students, the value of creative expression through theater is undeniable — but the unique approach that distinguishes our program is our clear focus on finding and nurturing individual voice. Over the past 30 years, we've welcomed the development of countless new scripts, original performances, cabaret presentations and exceptional student initiatives.

Voices from the Theater Program

List of 7 items.

  • Acting Seminar

    The Acting Seminar is for actors to refine their ability to "respond truthfully under imaginary circumstances." Students acquire tangible acting skills that deepen their connection to the play, allowing them to build believable and sustainable characters in a scene or play. Students also work to develop vocal skills that connect them to their natural voice and instinct, allowing them to focus on building truthful relationships on and off stage.
  • Backstage

    Backstage opportunities abound. Our program offers students the chance to explore stage design, scenic painting, carpentry, light design, and stage management.
     
    From Molly Gump ’16: “You get to see an entirely new side of performance. You have a whole new perspective on why things happen the way they do on stage and backstage. Being a stage manager gave me a lot of confidence in being a leader, and in balancing the needs of being a leader and being a friend.”
  • Middle School Theater

    From our Students: “Being in Playmakers was a magical experience, and it really helped me break out of my shell. The whole cast has grown so close that we are really like a little family… Being a part of Playmakers helped me find my place in a new school. Drama families are truly the best kind of families!”
  • Performance Company

    Students in Grades 11 and 12 admitted to Performance Company have the opportunity to perform in published plays and work as a team to develop new and original work that will be performed throughout the school year. Company members also participate in several theater field trips and work with selected guest artists throughout the year.
  • Primary School Theater

    From the Department Chair: “Our commitment to the original voice begins early at Kent Place, with storytelling projects in our primary theater classes, performances in Hauser Hall and, on the big stage, our fifth grade Shakespeare Project.”

    From the Teacher: “Yes, performing on a stage can be scary, but there’s great value in taking risks, and the results can often be increased confidence and a willingness to take on leadership roles. Moreover, theater cultivates curiosity, and forces us to become thinkers. I’ve seen it over and over. Theater in education makes for smarter, bolder and braver young people.”

    From our Students: “I’m always so happy when I walk through the door to theater class. I can really be myself there! It makes me feel like I am a part of something big. When I step on the stage, it’s like nothing else matters... I feel like a superstar!”
  • The Musicals

    From Ashley Villarreal ’16: “The musicals at Kent Place – I had an amazing time and formed really strong friendships with people that you can’t really form in a classroom. Every time I did a musical I was inspired to continue my work in the performing arts.”
  • The Plays

    From the Department Chair: “Kent Place actors have participated in the world-premiere productions of Victoria Shudders, The Witchcraft at Salem Village, Bad Teacher, Down at the Bottom of a Deep, Dark Pit, Animal, Vanishing Marion and the musical Mother Jones. Four scripts developed for students – Coaster, How I Got That Part, What Andy Warhol Never Told Me and Maggie – are now published and produced both nationally and internationally. And more are on the way. Many of our student performers and directors have developed their own original performance projects, and some of these students have gone on to prestigious work in theater, film, television and theater education.”

    From our Students: “When I was a freshman, I was so nervous to get started, but the first cast I worked with could not have been more supportive – all of the upperclasswomen made us part of the group and included us in everything. All of the casts I’ve been a part of here have always been the nicest groups of people – no competition, no one-upping each other. It has always been about the support – everyone is excited to see everyone else succeed. “
We focus on performance and a commitment to the original voice.
Kent Place School is an all-girls K through 12 independent college preparatory day school with a coeducational Preschool, located in Summit, NJ.