Whitman Drama is an award-winning high school drama department directed by theater professional Christopher Gerken.
Each year, the organization produces a fall musical
featuring accompaniment by a student pit orchestra
, a winter play
, and a student-directed talent show
Additionally, the department hosts workshops and student-managed theater projects.
In 2012, Whitman Drama once again sponsored an evening of student directed one-act plays.
The home of the theatre program, the Daryl Shaw Auditorium, holds 1,200 seated audience members.
Whitman Drama is structured very much like a conservatory program.
The department's primary focus is on the process of artistic development rather than the end-product.
Students are responsible for ALL aspects of theater production.
They participate in multiple theater components — everything from on-stage performance to design to technical and production management.
The organization has an annual Student Producer, annual Student Stage Manager, annual Student Technical Director, and assistants to these positions who change per production.
It strives to promote intelligence, commitment, diversity and an understanding of the human condition by applying techniques based in realism.
Whitman Drama especially emphasizes student involvement and ownership.
The program is based in Bethesda, Maryland.
The school is a member of the Critics and Awards Program for High School Students (Cappies) National Capital Area
and has received several awards at the annual Gala.
Whitman is the only school in Maryland to have won either "Best Play" or "Best Musical" from the program.
(The school was awarded "Best Play" in 2010 for its production of Amadeus
and "Best Musical" in 2008 for its production of Aida
For a full list of Cappies awards that Whitman has won, please view our awards page
In August 2010, Whitman Drama performed The Laramie Project
at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival in Edinburgh, Scotland.
This was Whitman Drama's second time performing at the Festival; in 2007 the American High School Theater Festival
recognized it as one of America's top 50 high school drama programs and invited it to perform a production of Jason Robert Brown's Song's For a New World