Performing Arts

Your Stage Awaits

Like the entrance to the House of Thebes in a tragedy by Sophocles, wide stone steps lead to the double doors of the entrance to the Meeting Room, a beautiful, wood-paneled space with vaulted ceilings that once served as a chapel when Houghton Hall was a personal residence. Nowadays the Meeting Room echoes the voices and laughter of countless generations of Knox students who have conducted meetings, celebrated achievements, performed concerts, and read poetry within its walls. Here, as well as on our mainstage (The Wm. Turner Shoemaker Theater), young artists discover how to harness their performing talents and convert those passions into magnetic performances that thrill and captivate fellow students, teachers, staff, and families. Our students have the opportunity to explore music, dance, and theatre arts, including our specialized program in Stagecraft, in a Performing Arts Program that focuses on maximizing student strengths and providing a safe but challenging environment for skill development and personal growth.

Whether you program the light or you step into the light, whether it's The Shoemaker, the Performing Arts Studio, or the stone steps outside the Meeting Room, your stage awaits at Knox.


Whether singing in our Vocal Ensemble or playing guitar in our trimester recital, our students learn the power of music and discover the many occasions when music can entertain, enlighten, and console. They share the beauty of music at our coffeehouses and talent shows, our recitals and productions, our 9/11 Memorial and our commencement in the Elsa Eriksen Rose Garden behind Houghton Hall. Music permeates life at Knox.

Theatre Arts

Our actors learn the entire process of characterization, from script analysis to gestures, from prop manipulation to make-up application.

Most importantly, they develop a strong understanding of character through a series of playwriting exercises designed to help them read and interpret scripts from the playwright's point of view, providing our young actors with a thoroughly developed set of tools with which to approach auditions, cold readings, rehearsals, and performances.


Our Stagecraft course provides students with the foundational skills in technical theatre through applied learning experiences in set construction, scenic painting, costuming, props construction, and more.

Our scenic painters craft Shakespearean stages reimagined in an Art Deco style. Working with our full-size cyclorama and ETC Source-4s, our lighting students have the opportunity to create shadowy underground worlds where gamblers risk it all for love.




Students perform at our Coffee House in recognition of World AIDS Day. Click here to learn more about the event.

Our Middle School Performing Arts class, along with our Upper School Choir, attend a performance of Mozart's Don Giovanni at the Metropolitan Opera in New York City.

Sixth graders attach lauan plywood to the sides of a platform. The middle school students created a thrust stage (with audience seating and playing area) on our stage!

Dance students rehearse their interpretation of the song "Glory" from the film Selma. The students presented their moving tribute in our winter trimester recital in February 2016 as part of Black History Month.

Students perform Kiss Me, Kate on the stage of the Wm. Turner Shoemaker Theater. Click here to learn more about our theatre program.

Upper school theatre students attend a performance of John Steinbeck's Of Mice and Men at Bay Street Theatre, a professional theatre in Sag Harbor, New York.