Performing Arts

Rolling Hills Prep and Renaissance Schools' performing arts program supports our creative spirits pillar through the exploration of theatre and music. Through the theatre program, students are involved in the production of high-quality plays and musicals. They enjoy the opportunity to build acting, playwriting, directing and design skills in theatre courses and to expand and share those skills through productions guided by professional artists both on and off campus. The program offers opportunities for participation in varied musical genres, providing high-quality instruction that brings out the best in students.

Drama classes begin in middle school with improvisation games, story dramatizations and the performance of plays and self-written skits. Students have performances on Grandparents’ and Friends’ Day, International Day, and in other showcases throughout the year. In the upper school, students may take Theatre I & II to develop acting, playwriting, directing and design skills. Through theatre games and exercises, scene studies, reading and deconstructing plays, and viewing and discussing plays, students build creative thinking, teamwork, and aesthetic analysis skills. The advanced level Theatre III & IV and Honors Acting classes focus on expanding vocal and physical technique through an in-depth examination of different styles of theatre. Upper school drama students also appear in at least one evening presentation of their coursework, performed to great applause from family and friends.

Music in middle school is a fundamental class that explores key concepts through a variety of methods including singing and tone chimes. Theory, harmony, and note-reading are introduced while more advanced students improve their sight-reading skills. Students experience performing with a group, developing a sense of ensemble as well as the confidence needed to succeed on the stage.

Major Productions

Middle School Musical

The Middle School performs its own musical, open to any middle school student in either school. During the middle school musical production, students participate both on stage and off in the technical theatre crew.

Fall Play

Upper school students audition for all parts of the fall play, which has included comedies and dramas. Students manage production and technical aspects of the shows, including building, painting, lighting, and sound. Our plays have been recognized by the California Theatre Association and the California State Thespians.

Upper School Musical

The spring musical is open by audition to all upper school students and is performed at the historic Warner Grand Theater, a beautifully renovated 1939 Art Deco theatre space in San Pedro. The musical is supported by a live orchestra,

giving students that true Broadway feel. Past musicals have included The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, The Wedding Singer, and Urinetown. Students also play a key role backstage and have the opportunity to work alongside working professionals in the technical theatre world.

Thespian Society

RHP and Ren are members of the International Thespian Society and the California State Thespians. Membership is earned through participation on stage and backstage.

Additional Performances

Additional performance opportunities abound for musicians and performers of all types. Annual events showcasing student talent include International Day and Grandparents’ and Friends’ Day, two Coffee Houses, Classical Night, and a Spring Performing Arts Showcase.