“I believe that we learn by practice.  Whether it means to learn to
dance by practicing dancing or to learn to live by practicing living,
the principles are the same.

–  Martha Graham

The Visual and Performing Arts

An essential part of the academic program at St. Joseph High School, the visual and performing arts provide countless opportunities for students to expand their imaginations. Academic offerings include Studio Art; Drawing and Painting; Creative Crafts; Portfolio and the Creative Process and Acting and Video Production; to name a few.

Students develop technical abilities and personal vision through the study of various traditional and contemporary media.  They build confidence and self-discipline while enhancing analytical and communication skills. Students move beyond boundaries and explore new ideas through theater, dance, speech and music.



The Dance Club explores a variety of dance styles while performing at school celebrations throughout the year. Their calendar culminates at The Dance Workshop Day at Long Island University’s Tilles Center for the Performing Arts.


The Step Team uses a form of percussive dance where the entire body becomes an instrument that produces rhythms and sounds through a mixture of footsteps, spoken word and hand claps. The Step Team performs at basketball games and other school functions and competes in the Catholic High School Girl’s Athletic Association competition every April.


Led by a professional theater and musical director, Mr. Ethan Schlesser, the Drama Club develops acting, singing and improvisational skills for all levels. Weekly practice includes theater exercises, games and skits. Small productions are performed throughout the year in preparation for a major musical in the spring.

Speech and Debate

St. Joseph High School’s thriving and successful Speech Team is ranked third in New York State and in the top five nationally. The Team provides a formal setting for students to develop public speaking skills with clarity and confidence through Oral Interpretation, Duo Presentations, Drama and Original Oratory.

The SJHS Band

Students develop their natural music ability through singing, performance and playing a variety of musical instruments. Frequent performances provide opportunities to interact with faculty as fellow musicians in new and creative ways.

• SJHS Speech team is ranked third in New York State and in the top five nationally.

• The visual arts help students to develop technical abilities and personal vision.