The Arts program at Pennington is a hands-on exploration of humanity—in all of its glorious forms.
At Pennington, involvement with the Arts nurtures skill sets both creative and conceptual, individual and collaborative. We guide students through creative processes, during which they learn to think critically, create story, compose worlds, and identify that which unites and divides the human experience. With the tools and techniques of drama, music, and visual arts, we teach students to make sense of and express their understanding of the world.
Arts are integral to the Middle School curriculum. Middle School students delve into a range of disciplines, with courses in visual art, music, and theatre built into the school day. Students also have opportunities to pursue arts activities beyond the daily schedule, such as the Middle School Art Club, cast or crew of the Middle School Play, Middle School Singers, and instrumental ensembles, as well as private music lessons.
Upper School students in the Arts program are empowered with possibilities. Courses range from acting, music theory, and video production to ceramics, studio art, and photography. There are also a variety of extracurricular activities and ensembles to explore. While we are proud of the many opportunities for shared experiences in the program, the students’ unique perspectives, backgrounds, and interests are embraced and guide their artistic explorations.
The Pennington Arts program provides preparation for careers that require creativity, inquiry, empathy, critical analysis, and collaboration. The upper-level classes and extracurricular activities equip students with the necessary skills and experiences to pursue the arts at the college level and beyond. Whether our students go on to participate in the arts as a vocation or avocation, the lessons learned in arts classes enrich their lives immeasurably.
Beatrix Kim '23 won third place in the 2021 Fighting Words Poetry Contest, an international Pulitzer Center competition for students in grades K–12. Kim's poem, "when we are at sea," was selected from over 725 entries from eleven countries and twenty states. In addition to a cash prize, Kim's poem is featured on the Pulitzer Center website.
This year's edition of Pennyroyal, Pennington's student art and literary magazine, is chock-full of extraordinary poems, prose pieces, and works of art.
James Horan, teacher of music, composed an anthem honoring the memory of John Lewis, the civil rights leader and congressman. "Your Turn to Let Freedom Ring (The Ballad of John Lewis)," performed by the Pennington Singers, was played during the Chapel celebration of Black History Month on Wednesday, February 17.