Signature Programs

Arts

Digital Arts

Westmark News Network (WNN)

Westmark News Network (WNN)

Every morning, Westmark School's Video Production class broadcasts a 14-minute news show from the WNN Studio on campus. The production staff is made up of high school students who are responsible for various duties throughout the week. Some students edit news segments while others tape news stories or prepare the studio for broadcast. The students become a team over time and develop skills in many areas of production.

  • Provides educational overview of production, including the basic mechanics of various digital video and sound equipment
  • Students learn to edit using Final Cut Express
  • Brings student body and staff together in preparation of shows
  • Students generate excitement and interest on campus by highlighting campus activities.

    Digital Photography

    Digital Photography (Grades 10, 11 & 12)The Westmark Digital Arts department offers a year-long course in Digital Photography. Students in the course use DSLR cameras to master the basic concepts of subject selection, framing, focus, and exposure control in the camera’s manual setting mode while documenting life on Westmark’s campus. As the year progresses, students build upon these fundamental concepts with a deeper exploration of composition, thematic prompts, portfolio selection, and photo editing and manipulation within Adobe Light Room and Photoshop software. In addition to developing a personal portfolio, students contribute work to Westmark’s database of campus photographs for inclusion in our yearbook, website, and daily news broadcast, WNN.


    Introduction to Video Production

    Introduction to Video ProductionIntro Video is a mandatory quarter-long class in the Fine Arts quad rotation that all Upper School students will be required to cycle through during their Freshman year. Every morning, Westmark School’s Intro Video class oversees all the responsibilities that go into broadcasting a 5-10 minute news show from the Westmark News Network (WNN) Studio to the rest of the campus. In addition to running the production booth and performing as on-air personalities, students in the class must generate and organize the broadcast's content as well as conceive, film, and edit short videos in a highly collaborative setting.


    Advanced Video Production

    Advanced Video Production (Grades 10, 11 & 12)
    Pre-Requisite: Introduction to Video Production
    The Westmark Digital Arts department offers a year-long course in Advanced Video Production that is available to all students interested in building upon their experience from Intro Video. Students will transfer their production skills outside of the studio setting and learn how to consistently acquire clear footage and audio on HD cameras in a variety of shooting locations while following established on-set collaborative dynamics. Students then edit and fine-tune their projects using Adobe Premiere software. In addition to developing personal creative video projects, students contribute work to Westmark’s database of campus videos for possible inclusion on our website and in our daily news broadcast, WNN.


    Advanced Filmmaking

    Advanced Filmmaking (Grades 11 & 12)
    Pre-Requisite: Advanced Video Production
    The Westmark Digital Arts department offers a year-long course in Advanced Filmmaking that is available to all students who have completed Advanced Video. Students build upon the pre-planning, on-set, and post-production fundamentals they have already established by studying and experimenting with a variety of differing film styles. Students continue to use HD cameras to acquire footage and Adobe Premiere to edit their material, but they are also introduced to a wider array of audio and video production equipment as well as an additional selection of visual effects and sound design software in the Adobe Creative Cloud suite. In addition to developing personal creative video projects, students contribute work to Westmark’s database of campus videos for possible inclusion on our website and in our daily news broadcast, WNN.


    Performing Arts

    Introduction to Theater Arts (Grade 9)

    Introduction to Theater Arts (Grade 9)

    Westmark School's Performing Arts department offers a quarter-long course in Theatrical Arts. Our Introduction to Theater Arts course is geared towards introducing students to various aspects of theater world. Students are immersed in acting methods, improvisation, theatrical design, theater history, application, creativity, and teamwork. Students are also given to opportunity to report announcements for the performing arts department on our WNN broadcast network each week. Student’s work will be showcased annual at the Arts Showcase Students will be able to walk away with a little more confidence in performing in public and/or public speaking.

    Theater Arts II (Grades 10, 11 & 12)

    Theater Arts II (Grades 10, 11 & 12)

    Westmark School's Performing Arts department offers a year-long course in Theatrical Arts. Our Theater Arts II course is geared for the beginner and intermediate students interested in Theater Arts. Students are immersed in acting methods, monologues/scene work, acting techniques and skills, improvisation, voiceover work, stand-up comedy, dubbing, application, writing, directing, technical theater, designing (costume, set, sound, make-up), and teamwork. They become well-versed in theatrical terminology and get a hands-on approach in each unit covered. Student’s work will be showcased annual at the Arts Showcase. Students are able to walk away understanding how to develop their resume, what to look for in a headshot, and how to prepare for an audition.

    Theater Arts III (Grades 11 & 12)

    Theater Arts III (Grades 11 & 12)

    Westmark School's Performing Arts department offers a year-long course in Theatrical Arts. Our Theater Arts III course is geared for the intermediate and advanced students interested in continuing their exploration and practice of Theater Arts. Students are asked to find their voice through various acting methods, and explore multiples careers in this field, as well as explore the history of theater and current theater in national and international arts, continuing their practice in different areas for Technical Theater (i.e. Qlab sound design, airbrush make-up designs), and producing and preparing material for projects and performances. Students will apply techniques in various performance opportunities in class and outside of class. Student’s work will be showcased annual at the Arts Showcase. Students in Theater Arts III take a more advanced and professional approach in the field of Theater Arts.

    Production (Fall Play & Spring Musical)

    Production (Fall Play & Spring Musical – Middle & Upper School Students)

    Production (Fall Play & Spring Musical – Middle & Upper School Students only)

    Each year, Westmark School's Performing Arts department produces a fall play and a spring musical. Rehearsals are held after school. Students may work as a cast or a crew member (Crew is only for Upper School students) in each production. The fall play is around Mid-November and the spring musical is around the end of April each year. Auditions for the fall play are held at the beginning of each school year and auditions for the spring musical are held right after students return from winter break.

    Please email Mrs. Kristina Turpin, Theatrical Producer, kturpin@westmarkschool.org) if you have any questions regarding any of our Westmark Productions.

    Introduction to Music (Grade 9)

    Introduction to Music (Grade 9)

    As part of the 9th grade quarterly arts rotation, Artist in Residence, James McVay, teaches Intro to Music using his “ Right Brain” approach to learning how music works. Teaching music theory through this method his students are taught to “speak the language of music” by learning the fundamental principles of melody and chord structure, as well as learning about the patterns that all music is made up of. Students learn about music history and appreciation, and have hands on instruction in basic piano, guitar, bass, drums ukulele and several other instruments.

    Visual Arts

    Visual Arts

    Visual Arts

    The Upper School visual arts curriculum builds sequentially on the foundational and formal visual art concepts that were introduced in earlier courses. Through studio classes, art history, clubs, and production design upper school students have opportunities to develop an advanced skill level. For the serious art student, advanced level studio classes provide time to pursue independent projects or work on building a portfolio for college applications. In addition, students at the high school level who participate in stage crew/production design, work in concert with Performing Arts students to design, develop and build scenery and props for the Performing Arts productions.

    Student work is showcased at an annual Art Showcase and school events throughout the year.

    Introduction to Visual Arts (Grade 9)

    Introduction to Visual Arts (Grade 9)As part of the 9th grade arts rotation, Intro to Visual Arts is a beginning level quarter length class, which enables students to develop an introductory knowledge of the Elements and Principles of Art and Design (line, form, value, color, shape, texture and space), as well developing beginning level skills with drawing and painting. Students are provided opportunities to develop basic techniques, practice analytical skills through discussion and writing about art & artists, and explore their creativity through projects that utilize a variety of media.

    Visual Arts II – Art History (Grades 11 & 12)

    Visual Arts II – Art History (Grades 11 & 12)This two-semester course is a survey of western art history and architecture from the prehistoric through contemporary eras. With an emphasis toward the understanding of art within historical context, students will explore the art and the many influences relevant to each historical era or art movement, including politics, class, religion, patronage, audience and gender. Students will also be introduced to the formal aspects of art and design as a tool through which to understand, analyze and make informed aesthetic judgments about art and the visual world around them.

    Design 1 & 2 (Grade 10 & 12)

    Design 1 & 2 (Grade 10 & 12)
    Pre-Requisite: Intro to Art or Equivalent Experience

    Design 1 & 2 is a year long, intermediate level studio course that builds on a foundational knowledge of art theory and application thorough studio experience. Using a modified choice approach, the curriculum emphasizes the Elements and Principles of Art and Design, art history, creative expression and aesthetic valuing/analysis. Assignments and projects provide students with opportunities to apply their knowledge of theory, technique, and/or personal artistic voice to create original works of art. Studio work, sketchbook assignments, portfolio development, critiques and art/design history research assignments are all integral components of the course of study.


    Advanced Studio (Grade 11 & 12)

    Advanced Studio (Grade 11 & 12)
    Pre-Requisite: Design 1 & 2 or Equivalent Experience
    Westmark School's Visual Arts department offers a year-long Advanced Studio course. This course is geared for the advanced level student to develop a variety of individual projects that evidence their understanding of art theory and application through studio experience. Utilizing a modified choice approach, students are required to set individual artistic goals for the each of the two semesters. These include development of portfolio for college applications and developing the studio habits and mindset of working like a professional artist. Museum visits, research, written work/reflection, visual journal/sketchbook review, critiques and portfolio development are all incorporated into this course.

    Please note: Visual Arts II (Art History), and Design 1 & 2 are UC approved and fulfill the F-G arts requirement. All courses are not offered each year. Courses offered each year are dependent on student interest and need.

    Stage Crew/Production Design

    Stage Crew/Production Design

    Each year, Westmark School's Performing Arts department produces a Fall Play and a Spring Musical. Students in the Upper School have the opportunity to collaborate with the Performing Arts department, and act as scenic artists, and stage crew for the Fall Play and the Spring Musical. Rehearsals/Production times are usually scheduled for after school, and students help with design and production of lighting, sound, scenery and props, costumes hair and make up, as well as acting as backstage crew during performances.

    Questions about the Fine Arts department or stage crew should be directed to Ms. Cynthia Hersch, chersch@westmarkschool.org

    2017 Fall Play

    General Information

    Westmark Performing Arts is thrilled to announce the 2017 Fall Play "MISS NELSON IS MISSING."


    PERFORMANCE DATES (approx. 70 min; no intermission)

    Thursday, November 16th, 2017 - 4:00pm

    Friday, November 17th, 2017 - 7:00pm

    Saturday, November 18th, 2017 - 7:00pm

    General ticket information and staff/faculty complimentary tickets will be announced at the end of October/early November.

    Production Faculty & Staff / Parent Contacts

    Kristina Turpin - Theatrical Producer
    kturpin@westmarkschool.org

    Joan Marie Hurwit - Production Director
    jhurwit@westmarkschool.org

    Cynthia Hersch - Production Designer
    chersch@westmarkschool.org

    Keaton McNamara - Production Manager
    kmcnamara@westmarkschool.org

    Ruth Devine - "Drama Mama"
    Parent Communication/Volunteer Liaison

    rmdevine@pacbell.net

    Cast List

    Kaya Gretsch as Miss Nelson/Miss Viola Swamp

    Jared Bernstein as Principal Humleker

    Bogie Rosenzweig as Detective McSmogg

    Andrew Moser as George Jorgenson Jr.

    Ella Moser as Phoebe

    Sterling Jackson as Raymond

    Julia Arem as Lavita

    Jo Jo Devine as Mouse

    Kari Schnapp as Kimberly

    Jake Rose as Elvis

    Starr Pliner, Leila Hakakha, Catelyn Hofman
    Kids/Classmates

    Crew List

    David Alliance...Lighting

    Conrad Kassin...Spotlight

    David Nguyen...Sound

    Lior Surkin-Iny...Stage Manager, backstage crew

    Annabelle Negron...Scenic Art, Prop Master, Backstage Crew Sets

    Julia Magnes...Scenic Art, Backstage Crew Sets

    J Slater-Jackson...Scenic Art, Backstage Crew Sets, Curtain

    Nicole Katz...Scenic Art, Backstage Crew Sets

    Amara Lawrence...Costume, Make Up and Hair, Front of House

    Téa Helfrich...Costume, Make Up and Hair, Front of House

    Bella Pellington...Costume, Make Up and Hair, Front of House

    Andy Klachin...Usher

    Cynthia Hersch
    Fine Arts Department
    Chair and Teacher

    chersch@westmarkschool.org

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    Ben Simington
    Digital Arts Teacher

    bsimington@westmarkschool.org

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    Kristina Turpin
    Performing Arts and Music Teacher
    Theatrical Producer

    kturpin@westmarkschool.org

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    Joan Hurwit
    Production Director
    jhurwit@westmarkschool.org

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