Theatre Program

About JEB Stuart’s Theatre Department

JEB Stuart Drama – What and Why?
The Stuart Drama Department involves students at all grade levels in a wide range of credited classes as well as extracurricular activities. The department strives to provide students with a safe, professional, positive working environment in which to explore the many elements of Theatre Arts. Classes are all highly participatory and engage the whole student – voice, body, intellect, imagination, heart.
Participating in Theatre Arts classes and extracurricular activities gives students a fun and challenging way to develop professional and personal skills. The department programs guide students to be articulate communicators, effective collaborators, wise risk takers, motivated innovators and more. Stuart Drama aims to give students experiences that develop skills in high demand in the 21st Century work place and our rapidly changing world.

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Julia A. Wharton

A theatre director and educator with over 26 years of experience, Mrs. Wharton has taught, performed, directed and managed theatre and dance in 7 different countries. With a BA in Theatre and Dance from Connecticut College, Mrs. Wharton feels passionately that the arts, and especially theatre, are a powerful tool for leading, inspiring, building and nurturing individuals as well as communities. Her career began in Washington, DC, working at the Folger Shakespeare Theatre. Her many positions have included School Director and Modern Dance teacher at Austin Ballet Theatre in Austin, Texas; dancer and teacher for the Dragadanza Modern Dance Company in La Paz, Bolivia; founder and director of the theatre department at Harare International School in Zimbabwe; Theatre Department Chair at the American International School in Guatemala City; and Theatre Department Director at Rocky Run Middle School in Fairfax County, VA. Mrs. Wharton was a Fairfax County Teacher of the Year in 2012. She has taught acting, directing, teaching Shakespeare, improvisation and theatre history and has worked with students ages 3 to 73. In addition to her teaching and administrative positions, Mrs. Wharton has a long directing resume, including more than 28 school, community and professional productions. Most recently she directed A Midsummer Night’s Dream by William Shakespeare, her fourth theatre production for the globally acclaimed Harare International Festival of the Arts. Other productions include Cats (the musical), Dead Man’s Cell Phone by Sarah Ruhl, The Crucible by Arthur Miller, You Can’t Take It With You by G. Kaufman and M. Hart, The Visit by Friedrich Durenmatt, The Importance of Being Earnest by Oscar Wilde, Stefanie Hero by Mark Medoff and many others.

Mrs. Wharton is a proud spouse to her diplomat husband and proud mother to her three kids. She has two cats but is really more of a dog person. And she loves horseback riding.

“Theatre is life without the boring parts” – Alfred Hitchcock

See these important documents attached:

Department Brochure