Performing & Studio Arts
Music and art are integral elements of the Mount Tamalpais School experience. Every student gets on stage and performs. Every student studies how to draw, paint, and sculpt. And every student has the opportunity to explore his or her musical talents through campus bands, instrument and voice lessons, and recitals. We strongly believe that the arts, from visual to music to performance, develop skills and passions that go far beyond a student’s years at MTS.
The studio arts program helps foster a lifelong appreciation of art by introducing students to a wide variety of media and concepts, from basic drawing to advanced color theory. With the help of instructors who themselves are talented artists, students are inspired to achieve phenomenal results. We encourage exploration, creativity, and self-expression, while promoting mastery of basic art skills. The sequence of lessons within each grade level is carefully planned to accommodate the interest spans, skills, and abilities of the students.
Students take drama throughout their time at MTS, starting in kindergarten.
The music curriculum for students in kindergarten–grade 3 focuses on developing basic understanding of rhythm and pitch. Fourth and fifth graders participate in a shared large-scale musical theater project, the MTS winter play. Cast in supporting roles, fourth graders enjoy their first drama experience with a challenging theatrical production, while fifth grade students audition and rehearse for the first time. In addition to developing projection, memorization, and acting skills, students learn to use props, stay in character, and build a relationship with the audience.
The music curriculum for grades 6–8 exposes students to a wide variety of music, from the ancient Greeks to the Medieval to the present. Through the study of their own musical heritage, along with the musical traditions of other cultures, students acquire a broader understanding of cultural diversity and its importance in developing civilization as a whole.
MTS produces a spring musical, open to students in grades 6–8 by audition. Students in grades 4–8 may participate in the instrumental music program, which involves individual private lessons along with three bands (Junior Band, Concert Band, and Jazz Band). Additionally, students in grades 6–8 may participate in a number of performing arts groups, including the MTS Chorus, the Boys' Dance Ensemble, the Girls' Dance Ensemble, the Vocal Ensemble, and Scene Study.