Talent Unlimited High School provides students with a rigorous and state-certified four-year CTE (Career and Technical Education) program of study in Drama which incorporates a challenging curriculum of acting technique, movement, voice and speech, theater history, theater production, and digital film production. Students perform in over six productions a year in The Black Box Theater and produce an original film festival in May.
The program of study focuses on the following objectives:
To prepare students for entry into college, technical schools, or the world of work.
To prepare students for a career pathway into the entertainment industry or related media and communication fields.
To provide students with state of the art technology that meets industry standards.
To equip students with the necessary skills to graduate with their designated cohort.
To provide students with the necessary skills to excel in their Regents exams.
To provide students with work-based learning opportunities and internships to prepare them for the world of work.
To prepare students with the core knowledge necessary to pass their technical assessment (a city-wide Theater Arts examination administered by the Office of Arts and Special Projects).
By the completion of the program, students are expected to:
Enter post-secondary institutions or obtain entry level positions in their career pathway.
Pass their technical assessment and graduate with a CTE endorsed diploma.
Graduate on time with their cohort.
Pass all Regents Exams.
Master all technology relevant to the program of study.
Participate in work-based learning opportunities.
The program will provide students with educational and experiential activities to achieve the above objectives through:
Project-based learning activities focused on performance, production, media, and industry.
Interdisciplinary instruction aligning the New York State Learning Standards including CDOS and industry standards.
Work-based learning opportunities and internships with Roundabout Theatre, Classic Stage Company, The Park Avenue Armory, Tribeca Film Institute, among others.
A four year, sequenced program of study which prepares students for a career pathway into the industry and a post-secondary credit allowance.
By the conclusion of their four year journey at Talent Unlimited, drama majors will be skilled in the theatre arts, prepared for study at the university level, and ready for the world of work – whether in the entertainment industry or beyond. T.U. graduates go onto to study at conservatories, find jobs in the industry, or major in completely unrelated fields at the college level while simultaneously pursing their passion for the arts in a ceaseless variety of ways.
TALENT UNLIMITED DRAMA COURSE DESCRIPTIONS
Talent Unlimited High School’s Drama program is a New York State certified CTE (Career and Technical Education) course of study. Students take a sequence of non-duplicative, conservatory-style classes culminating in a four-part New York City Comprehensive Theater Arts Exam. Upon completion of both the course of study and the exam, students receive a Regents Diploma with an Advanced Designation in the Arts.
Freshman Acting: The Ensemble
The course theme is ensemble. The lessons are structured around: establishing trust and respect, building a creative environment which encourages actors to take risks, learning acting skills that can be shared with other actors and an audience, theater terminology, and applying all that is learned in presentations. Students develop and participate in an original production in collaboration with Epic Theater Workshop. Additionally students participate in a workshop sponsored by Theater Development Fund. This experience includes a series of classroom visits with a guest artist and attending a Broadway production at no cost to the students.
Freshman Movement: Yoga and Pilates
This course is designed to introduce Yoga and the Pilates technique of body conditioning. The emphasis will be on developing an understanding of the proper movement skills to improve posture, muscle tone, flexibility, balance and coordination. Students will gain knowledge and a practical understanding of these unique exercises and mat work systems. Students will gain an appreciation for fitness and body conditioning through active participation and related projects in anatomy, injury prevention, wellness, exercise philosophies, and alternative fitness programs.
- 10th Grade – Character Development
Sophomore Acting: Character Development
While there is still a strong focus on ensemble, emphasis is placed on self awareness and reflection, strengthening observation skills, and character development. Through exercises and assignments ensemble members begin to recognize and analyze their strengths & weaknesses as individual artists. They investigate the attributes of a strong artist. Additionally students participate in a workshop sponsored by Theater Development Fund. This experience includes a series of classroom visits with a guest artist and attending a Broadway production at no cost to the students. This workshop is followed by a scene study unit which may incorporate the play the students attended. The ensemble explores a playwriting unit and creates an original theater piece based on their lives. This piece is performed in front of their peers. All students participate in the annual Shakespeare monologue competition.
Sophomore Movement: Introduction to Ballet
This course is designed to introduce the student to the fundamentals of ballet technique. The emphasis will be on developing an understanding of proper movement skills through specific exercises to enhance proper body placement, strength, flexibility, balance, musicality and movement coordination. Students will gain an understanding and appreciation for ballet as an expressive art form.
Honors Repertory: Technical Production I (10th and 11th Grade)
Sophomore and Junior drama students who have achieved an 80% average in their drama classes and are passing all of their academic courses are selected to participate in this course. This is a performance-based class. Students will be cast in a play and spend the majority of the semester in rehearsal. Participants learn about all aspects of play production including aspects such as stage management, set design, lighting design, program and flyer design. The process will culminate with 5 performances of the production. All drama students at Talent Unlimited will attend the play. All acting classes analyze, critique, or have an exam based on the play and performance.
- 11th Grade – Theater History and Technique
Junior Acting: Theater History & Technique
This course combines the study of the history of Western Theater with the acting styles and techniques that emerged out of each time period. We begin with the Ancient Greeks and cover the major movements and innovations spanning 2,500 years to the present day. Students will become familiar with the major schools of acting with a concentration on Stanislavski, Stella Adler, Sanford Meisner, and Grotowski. Students will study several major plays and playwrights, perform monologues and scenes from these ground-breaking plays, and complete various projects aligned with course goals.
Drama Analysis: From Theatre to Film
This course centers on the analysis and interpretation of great theatrical works through the lens of film. Students will read, view, analyze, explore and respond to various works that had their origins in the theatre and were reimagined in film. Ranging from modern interpretations of classical works, to the art of Chaplin and Keaton, to the craft of Marlon Brando, students will analyze the ingredients of great drama and apply these insights to their own scenes, monologues, and projects.
Junior Movement: Historical Dances and Creative Movement
This course is designed to give the student of drama a solid foundation in a variety of historical dances beginning with Greek choral movements, Roman clowning, Shakespearean Court Dances, Minuet, Waltz, and moving into the 20th Century with Tango, Ballroom, Swing. and modern technique. The emphasis will be on period movement and developing the student’s ability to both represent and improvise, move as a character, breathe properly and relax. Students will choreograph their own original dances and complete a variety of related projects based on historical dances and modern, creative movement.
Honors Repertory: Technical Production II (see 10th grade above
Senior Repertory: Theater Production I, II, & III
12th Grade students spend the entire year in production. They apply all of the skills that they have honed over the previous three years. Students participate in two productions. Over the years these productions have included adaptations, original pieces, recognized published plays and one act play festivals. All drama students at Talent Unlimited will attend the play. All acting classes analyze, critique, or have an exam based on the play and performance. The ensemble creates an original piece that is incorporated into the holiday show. All students participate in the annual Shakespeare monologue competition.
Digital Filmmaking and Production
This course is designed to give students the knowledge and skills to write, direct, produce, shoot, edit, market, and screen their own original digital video films. The course covers the foundational knowledge and technical skills required to create and produce their own films including a study of the language of cinema, the filmmaker’s equipment, screenwriting, pre-production, production, shooting techniques, post-production, editing, marketing and screening. The course culminates in a school-wide presentation and Film Festival.