Performing Arts

The Performing Arts Program at Woodlands provides opportunities for students at various ability and experience levels to discover their potential and develop their talents in vocal and instrumental music, and theater production.


Woodlands’ Drama program strives to develop the total person. "Theater as Education" is our program’s philosophy. Each year, Woodlands stages a play and a musical that offer students a choice of venues to showcase their talents in acting and musical theater.


Woodlands provides a number of curricular and extracurricular opportunities that allow students to pursue their interests and develop their skills in vocal music. Our voice students are able to share their accomplishments with peers and the community through performances, competitions, and theater productions.


Woodlands’ curricular and extracurricular opportunities in instrumental music allow our students to pursue their wide range of interests, abilities, and experience. Our musicians and choral groups regularly compete and earn awards in district and state annual competitions.

Curricular Opportunities

Performing Arts Choir

Offered as a curriculum elective, the Performing Arts Chorus provides students the opportunity to develop their voices and to perform a varied musical repertoire. Sight-reading and ear-training activities are emphasized. The chorus meets four times a week and is open to all students and grade levels. Performances include three different scheduled concerts and numerous independent requests. One year of Performing Arts Chorus experience is strongly recommended for students who wish to audition for Kaleidoscope. All members have the opportunity to compete in the Illinois Music Educators Association (IMEA) District Festival, as well as the Illinois High School Association’s (IHSA) Solo and Ensemble Contests.

Performing Arts Orchestra

The Performing Arts Orchestra is open to string and wind players at the intermediate and advanced levels. (Beginners can sign up for private lessons through our instructor.) Auditions for new members are held the first Friday of each school year. We meet daily from 7:30am to 8:10am in the Orchestra Room in Hilltop, with additional rehearsal times scheduled as needed. Orchestra is a curricular offering and grades are issued.

Woodlands’ Orchestra performs a variety of small and large ensemble works from the entire Classical genre and from more popular styles, including works for strings, winds, and combined groups. Opportunities also exist for percussionists, pianists, and guitarists. Original compositions and arrangements are introduced yearly to meet the Orchestra Ensemble’s instrumentation needs.

All Orchestra members have the opportunity to compete in the Illinois Music Educators Association (IMEA) District Festival. Members also have the opportunity to compete in the Illinois High School Association (IHSA) and the North Shore/Northwestern University Solo and Ensemble Contests, both held in March. Woodlands’ participation in solo and ensemble events has earned us numerous superior ratings. We perform in major school concerts in December and May, as well as at various liturgies and special occasions.

Advanced Placement Music Theory

Woodlands also offers an AP Music Theory course. This Advanced Placement class is available to seniors who are preparing to take the AP Music Theory test. The class is open to any student who wishes to explore the theory and technique involved in writing music. It is also valuable for students who are aspiring to a music career or who wish to pursue undergraduate studies in this area. Some universities require this course for admission into their music major/minor programs.

Extracurricular Opportunities


Kaleidoscope is our award-winning select choir, open by audition only. Students selected for this group have advanced training in both sight-reading and ear-training activities. Kaleidoscope practices three times a week and performs high school and college level repertoire. Group members compete in the Illinois Music Educators (IMEA) District Contest and Festival and the Illinois High School Associations (IHSA) Organizational Competition. Each year, Kaleidoscope travels to a national competition. Previous trips have been to St. Louis, Boston, New York, Seattle, San Francisco, New Orleans, Montreal and Washington D.C.

by audition

A Choir'd Taste (JV Kaleidoscope)

JV-Kaleidoscope, aka A Choir’d Taste, is open to any Woodlands student. The group meets two days a week. Due to the demanding curriculum, many students do not have the opportunity to enroll in the curriculum Performing Arts Chorus. This group allows students to have a choral experience over and above their regular course offerings while also preparing them for admittance into Kaleidoscope at a later date. Please note: Auditions are not required to participate in A Choir’d Taste.

by audition


Microscope is a student-directed a cappella choral group for Kaleidoscope singers who have above-average vocal ability, are proficient in advanced vocal repertoire, are committed to their musical studies, and who possess the needed maturity to function in a group of this nature. Woodlands’ Choral Director selects the group’s ten members, including the director, at the beginning of the academic year.

by selection

Music Ministers

This choral group meets once a week and is open to all students. Music Ministers are responsible for music at Woodlands’ liturgies and prayer services.

Private Lessons

A private lesson music program is available to students of all abilities who want to take lessons in voice, guitar, flute, clarinet, piano, or organ. Lessons in other areas, including strings, are available if interest is indicated.