Updated January 2021
Our Performing Arts programs in Dance, Drama, and Music are open to all students in all grades. Whether you are a new dancer/actor/musician or have lots of experience, we have courses to help you grow and develop your performance skills. Whether your preferred instrument is your body, voice, strings, woodwinds, brass, percussion, or composing software you can gain experience and expertise from our instructors and leadership students. Some of the courses may also offer students the opportunity to fulfill other school requirements (e.g. DPA) or to attain external credentials (e.g. A.P. credit)
Grade 8 dance is an introductory course. In the studio, students will learn the basics of dance technique, history, anatomy, composition and choreography. Students will learn many different styles of dance, such as, contemporary, jazz, hip hop, African, ballet, and ballroom. This beginner level course will teach students basic dance technique and performance qualities developed from the elements of movement. Through a progressive approach, students can expect to improve in strength, flexibility, stamina, balance, and coordination; in addition to building confidence and building trust with one another
This course is an extension of the Dance 8 level, but students do not need to have previous experience. The general structure and content of the course is similar to Dance 8 in its warm ups, across the floor work, and team building exercises, but previous dance technique is coupled with more difficult challenges. This is a great course for beginner to intermediate dancers and adjustments in difficulty levels are made for more advanced students as well.
Dance Foundations 10
Depending on how the courses are split due to the number of students signing up for dance in each grade level, grade 10 students are usually placed in a split class with either Junior dancers or Senior dancers. An extension to its predecessor, Dance Foundations 9, this course is open to beginner to advanced dancers without any previous experience. The general structure and content of the course is similar to most dance courses in its warm ups, across the floor work, and team building exercises, but dance vocabulary and technique is further developed alongside exploration of choreography
Dance Foundations 11
Perfect for all levels of dance, Dance Foundations 11 centers students around all aspects of performance. Through challenging warm ups, across the floor work, and teacher or student led choreography, students will change their physique in body and mind. Technique is used to improve strength, flexibility, stamina, balance, and coordination, but an important focus is on the performance qualities of any choreography that is introduced in the classroom *Students do not need any previous experience in order to take this course. This course also fulfills the 150 minutes per week DPA required for grad transitions
Dance Foundations 12
This course is an extension of the Dance Foundations 11, but students are not required to have Dance Foundations 11 as a pre-requisite. This is a great course for students of any ability. Through challenging warm ups, across the floor work, and teacher or student led choreography, students will change their physique in body and mind. Technique is used to improve strength, flexibility, stamina, balance, and coordination, but an important focus is on the performance qualities of any choreography that is introduced in the classroom.
*This course fulfills the 150 minutes per week DPA required for grad transitions.
Dance Leadership 11/12
Dance Leadership 11 & 12 is a course for students who are passionate about dance and have previously taken dance at Burnaby North. Students should have a working knowledge of how the dance studio is run and must represent the Burnaby North Dance Program in a positive manner. They assist in the organization of all the dance activities around the school, especially the dance show. *To become a dance leader, you must speak with the teacher before enrolling.
Dance Technique & Performance 10/11/12
Students will learn in a progressive environment that includes daily warm up, across the floor technique, group exploration activities, and individual choreography work. Laban Movement Analysis will be introduced as will the development of their own choreographic techniques. This course focusses on how students can create their own choreography through teacher guided exercises. This course fulfills the 150 minutes per week DPA required for grad transitions.
In Drama 8 we start to explore what it means to collaborate with others, to tell a story, and build a community that supports each other. We play games, do exercises and build ensemble. Students find themselves challenged with the basics of performing. They learn about blocking, cheating out, being loud enough, and how to play character, to name a few. The skills in Drama transfer to many aspects of life students will encounter as students and as adults.
we explore deeper what was established in Drama 8, though no previous Drama experience is necessary. In these classes we are reaching for more risks, and growth in performance. Monologues, devised work and script work are the core of the curriculum. Students continue to increase their interpersonal skills, through assignments and check in. The grade 9s and 10s will work together on assignments, and at times have their own assignment for that grade.
A performance class for students interested in the theatre, and/or they like the community the class offers. Students will work on a range of different curriculum, with two showcases in winter and spring for additional performance opportunities. This class will look at genres of theatre, devised work, scripted work and be tailored for the class.
This class is open for any grade 10, 11, or 12 student who would like to play, take risks, be characters, and have a lot of fun. Students who want to do any of the above better, can also take the course. The course will study the basics of improvisation, look at short form games, long form improv and genre-based improv. There will be showcases for the all three aspects of Improv. A basic knowledge of performance will enhance the experience.
Scriptwriting and Directing 11/12
Students who take this course are inserted into the junior grades (either Drama 9, or Drama 9/10) to assist them in their work. They lead games, get to know the students and direct them in their assignments. Scriptwriting assignments are written for specific student groups and a journal will be necessary to track your work as well as directing notes.
Theatre Company/Musical Theatre
This class is by audition only. The school play or musical is an elective that takes place after school. Students will have to prepare their role, memorize lines, focus in rehearsal and show nights. Students who love performing, being part of a close community, and are committed to performance are encouraged to audition.
Burnaby North’s Music Program is recognized as one of the most outstanding programs in British Columbia. Our ensembles have received numerous accolades, as well as individual awards and highest recognitions from various organizations. As a committed member of the music program, you have dedicated yourself to excellence through performance. Members will have some of the most powerful experiences of their entire lives; make lasting friendships; learn the value of teamwork and discipline; share and explore musical expressions; and create beautiful music in the process.
Students in music courses will have the opportunity to travel as an ensemble and enter various music festivals and competitions (public health orders permitting). Performances are a compulsory part of the course and typically occur outside of regular class time. Students in all ensembles are expected to practice their instruments at home and must be available for evening concerts and performances.
Grades 8 – 12
Students with no previous music or school band experience are welcome. Students in this class learn to play a concert band instrument. Instruments are also chosen in consultation with the instructor to ensure a good match, and an enjoyable concert band experience for all students in the class. After successful completion of this course, students will take Junior Concert Band in the following year unless recommended otherwise by the instructor.
Junior Concert Band
Focal points for this ensemble will include the following: proper instrument techniques, proper fingerings/slide positions for each instrument, development of quality tone production and performance range, basic music theory, playing in major scales and developing skills to play various articulations, all the while gaining a strong understanding of performing as an ensemble. After successful completion of this course, students will take Intermediate Concert Band in the following year unless recommended otherwise by the instructor.
Pre-requisite: Gr.7 band or equivalent (at least 1+ year of training through private lessons on their principal instrument) or permission from the instructor.
Intermediate Concert Band
Grades 9 – 10
Focal points for this ensemble will include the following: proper instrument techniques, proper fingerings/slide positions for each instrument, development of quality tone production and performance range, music theory, ear-training, playing in major, minor and chromatic scales as well as refining skills to play various articulations, while gaining a strong understanding of performing as an ensemble. After successful completion of this course, students will take Senior Concert Band in the following year unless recommended otherwise by the instructor.
Pre-requisite: Junior Concert Band (Gr. 8 Band) or equivalent (at least 2.5-3 years of training through private lessons on their principal instrument) or permission from the instructor.
Senior Concert Band
Grades 10 – 12[Current class: Tuesdays and Thursdays 3:15-4:30pm]
Students will learn the structure and elements of music through playing in the most advanced level band course offered at BNSS. In this class, students will refine his/her skills as a musician by learning to play a musical instrument at a progressively higher level of skill. Subsequently, independent learning and regular practice are expected from students at this level. Students perform a wide variety of music (at a medium – advanced level) with music ranging from classical to modern music, including Broadway, jazz, pop, marches, overtures, and orchestral transcriptions.
Pre-requisite: Intermediate Concert Band (Gr.9 and Gr.10 Band) or equivalent (at least 3.5+ years of training through private lessons on their principal instrument) or permission from the instructor.
Grades 8 – 12[Current class: Wednesdays and Fridays 3:15-4:30pm]
*Drumline practice is held separately on Mondays after school.
BNSS Vikings Marching Band is the only marching band program offered in the district and won 3rd place in the Canadian Marching Band and Canadian Drill Teams category in 2016’s 118th Victoria Day Parade. This award-winning program is a co-curricular course that consists of 50 dedicated musicians ranging from grade 8 to 12. The student body is forged by a shared passion for the performing arts and a commitment to serve the community as proud ambassadors of BNSS.
BNSS Vikings Marching Band regularly performs the annual parades creating ties between the school and the community and instilling in students the importance of service to the community: Hyack Parade of Lights, the Rogers Santa Claus Parade, the Chinese New Year’s Parade and Burnaby’s Hats Off Day Parade. BNSS Vikings Marching Band is a great place to develop leadership skills, make new friendships, and make many unforgettable memories and experience.
Pre-requisite: No previous marching band experience required; students are encouraged to have at least 1 year of any musical instrument experience and basic music reading skills.
Grades 9 – 12[Current class: Tuesdays and Fridays 7:45 – 8:40am]
With introductions to jazz stylings and repertoire, students are encouraged to a beginning improvisation skill. A variety of styles of music will be explored, including swing, Latin, and rock. All students must have minimum of 2 years of instrumental experience. Students will be placed in the jazz band at their grade level. Typically, a jazz band is made up of 4-5 trumpets, 4-5 trombones, 5 saxophones, and one each of bass, drums, piano, and guitar. If there are a higher demand, additional group will be formed. Spaces for rhythm section: acoustic/electric bass, guitar, drums and piano are limited, and these positions may be auditioned. Jazz band requires a minimum of an intermediate level of music reading and technique for all players.
All Instrumental Jazz Ensemble members must be registered in concert band concurrently. Exceptions can be made for some members of rhythm section, such as guitarists, who are encouraged to take Concert Choir instead of concert band.
Pre-requisite: minimum of 2 years+ experience in their principal instrument or equivalent approved by the instructor.
Co-requisite: Concert Band
Grades 8 – 12
The BNSS orchestra has won numerous accolades in local and international festivals and recognized with the highest rank in prestigious competitions over the past several years. Orchestra members focus on fundamental/intermediate string techniques, develop leadership skills, intermediate level music theory/comprehension, and begin developing upper-level musicianship. Students in the strings program experience a range of musical opportunities including performing with full orchestra and ensemble, professional coaching sessions, attendance at live concerts and rehearsals, master classes with professional musicians, and educational excursions including variety of music festivals and competitions. To further enhance the experience of the ensemble and to expand annual repertoire, our performances include augmentation of the string orchestra with wind, brass, & percussion players from the concert bands to create a full symphony orchestra.
Pre-requisite: minimum of 6 months to 1 year of violin, viola, cello, or double bass experience.
Grades 8 – 12[Current class: Mondays and Thursdays 7:45 – 8:40am]
Prior choir experience is an asset but not required. Students develop music reading skills, knowledge of music and vocal technique. Students explore choral repertoire and vocal technique. A variety of musical styles will make up the repertoire, including classical, folk, Broadway, gospel, jazz and popular music. Students with an instrumental background are also welcome in choir as many of the pieces call for piano, guitar, bass, and drums. Clinicians will be brought in to work with students and to provide insight into specific aspects of performing. Students will also participate in field trips and extra-curricular performances.
Grades 8 –12[Current class: Mondays 3:00 – 4:30 pm]
Students will be in smaller group setting with more intricate and higher-level choral pieces. Strong music reading skill and vocal technique is an asset.
Co-requisite: Concert Choir
Students with any level of ability is welcome. This class will be designed to tailor each student’s needs. Students will explore technique of picking and strumming, various repertoire, and music theory. Having your own classical nylon string guitar is strongly recommended.
Grades 11 – 12
Students with a strong interest in music are encouraged to apply for this course. Students learn basic conducting, teaching skills, organizational skills and advanced musical skills. Software used includes Microsoft Excel, MS Word, Sibelius and Finale. Admission to this course is with teacher approval only.
Music Composition & Technique 11/12
This course gives students opportunities to explore in depth the creation of music in a range of styles and genre of music. Using either Musescore, GarageBand, and such, students will learn how music is created. Audio editing will also be taught. Students will have ample time to create their own pieces. Music reading skill is not required, but an asset.