Two snowstorms could not put a damper on the BASIS Independent Brooklyn Talent Show! After rescheduling twice, parents, students, and faculty gathered together on Friday, April 20 to celebrate the creativity and talent of our students.
Thank you to Doug Meils for the amazing photos capturing our student performers! Ironically, Doug took photos of every student performer but his own son, since he was too busy videotaping that performance. Following is a short photo compilation of the event for our families.
Instead of spending his summer sleeping in, going to camp, or taking family vacations, Kaeden R., one of our most theatrical rising 6th graders, spent the summer months doing something highly unusual: he flew to Paris to co-star in season 2 of a new Netflix series called "Seven & Me"!
Making Shakespeare interesting and relevant to students has always been a priority for our Performing Arts faculty, but Ms. Crowley and Ms. Simmons took it to the next level with their recent Shakepeare Club performance of Romeo & Juliet staged all around our schoolhouse.
Given our program's reputation of academic excellence, it is all too easy for familes to think of us as "that school for kids who are good at math and science".
It couldn't be further from the truth. BASIS Independent Brooklyn students are artists, musicians, linguists, skateboarders, athletes, dancers and more. They all just happen to be part of a well-rounded, accelerated learning environment.
Not only do we value all disciplines equally, but as a program rooted in the liberal arts, we teach the full spectrum of liberal arts with the fervor and depth seen in an advanced math or science class.
Did you know that our students take performing arts beginning in PreK? As a mandatory part of our curriculum from PreK- grade 4, students are given the option to dive even deeper in to the performing arts with a daily elective option starting in 6th grade. Many of these classes take place in our brand new 300 seat theater.
What is the purpose of the drama program at BASIS?
Ms. Crowley (AC): Our drama program aims to foster artistic and emotional development in our students. Skills are honed in physical and verbal communication, creative interpretation, imaginative play, and abstract thought. For me, the most important aspect of what we do is in the cultivation of empathy and global curiosity by learning to see ourselves in the lives and experiences of others. Here at BASIS Independent, the drama program works in conjunction with the other fine arts disciplines as a creative and emotional outlet for students while also posing exciting academic challenges.
Ms. Simmons (ES): We build skills that are useful both on and off the stage! An experiential curriculum starts with the "Tools in the Actors Toolbox", the Voice, Body, Imagination, Concentration, Collaboration. Students build on these skills creating scenes, original plays, and one acts.
How is it different than at other schools?
(ES): Practically speaking, we both came to BASIS Independent with backgrounds in professional theatre (as actors, directors, and dramaturges) in addition to our work as arts educators, giving us both a wide range of resources and experiences from which to draw. We both have a background in Devising Theatre, which means that the stories and plays on stage incorporate students' own ideas and experiences. This helps create a richer experience where everyone is engaged!
(AC): The primary difference that I see in our drama program is our broad, multi-pronged scope. Beginning in Kindergarten all the way into the high school years, drama is a present and integral aspect of the curriculum. As we are able to extend over so many grade levels, we are really able to craft a rich and comprehensive program, exposing students to aspects of the field where we would most likely not have the chance with a leaner schedule. As a teacher, it feels wonderful to have such support and confidence from BASIS Independent in the purpose and value of our subject. I feel so lucky here!
Inspired by the blissful feeling of uncovering connections, our blog Eureka! Brooklyn is about sharing moments that capture the essence of what it is to be a BASIS Independent student, teacher, administrator, or family.