Lori Sessions has been teaching theatre at her alma-mater, JPT for over 25 years. Past production photos line the lobby and include the Florida State Mainstage productions of On the Town, Disney’s Beauty and the Beast, Les Miserables, Ragtime and the state selected one-act plays, Theophilus North, Two Precious Maidens Ridiculed, The Romancers and Your Life is A Feature Film and the South Florida Cappie-winning productions of Singin’ in the Rain and Leading Ladies. Ms. Sessions is the program director and founder of the South Florida Cappies, has previously been awarded Broward County Arts Teacher of the Year, JP Taravella’s Teacher of the Year and The Florida Association for Theatre Educator of the Year. She was also inducted into the Broward Education Foundation “Hall of Fame for Distinguished Alumni”. Ms. Sessions is Past-President of The Florida Association for Theatre Education as will as Cappies, Inc. and also previously taught at the International Dance and Musical Theatre Festival in Pinzolo, Italy.
Taught by theatre experts Lori Sessions and Daniel Bonnett, the Taravella Theatre Courses offered as school electives come in four seperate classes. The first teaches the basics of theatre, drawing on theatre history, technical theatre, and different theatrical styles for a roundabout introduction to the art. The second begins to focus on auditioning and acting in great depth. The third and fourth classes dive deep into playwrighting, Shakespeare, film and television, as well as expert acting styles to provide students with experiences and training.
Costume and Makeup
This class introduces students to the elements of how to apply theatrical makeup and time period elements for costuming. The makeup overviews everything from basic corrective to trauma (such as gashes, scars, and burns). As for costumes, students learn a variety of techniques for choosing the right colors, cloth, and style of clothing appropriate for certain time periods.
The Musical Theatre program at JPT is headed by Lori Sessions. This class spends the entire year rehearsing for the school musical, learning about musical theatre history, in workshops on the many facets of musical theatre (i.e. auditioning, acting while singing, dancing), and working on creative projects such as school revues, county-wide performances, and student-written musicals.
“Cambridge International Drama encourages learners to develop their skills in performing, devising and researching a wide range of theatrical styles and genres. They learn to communicate with an audience through practical and creative work on performance texts and their own devised material, both as individuals and in groups. Underpinned by theoretical and practical study, they learn to research, analyze, create and interpret, and to become skilled, well-informed and reflective theatrical practitioners who enjoy drama.”-Cambridge International Students who take this course earn two quality points toward their weighted GPA. If students pass the exam, they earn college credit accepted at many institutions
The Technical Theatre Design and Production Class, commonly known as Stagecraft, is Drama's own course in building and painting scenery, as well as working lights, props, and sound. The program teaches students lighting, set, sound, and properties design, as well as artistic discipline, through safe, hands-on experiences for Taravella's mainstage and minor productions.