Express yourself

Artistic expression, regardless of how it is manifested through a painting, music, dance or theater  promotes confidence, focus, perseverance, problem-solving, and accountability and allows students the freedom to share their feelings and passions in an unspoken communication.


Drama & Theatre


Being involved in a school production or taking a drama class challenges students to open their minds to a different way of storytelling.

Grade 9-12 Senior School Production

In addition to the range of curriculum Drama classes offered throughout Senior School from Grade 8 through to the IB Theatre course, all students are invited to take part in the annual musical production in collaboration with the Music Department.

The production is one of the main events in the ISB calendar as it is performed to packed houses over a 3-day period in early December. Four performances include three evening performances and a matinée for the students in Grades 6 and 7, all accompanied by a live 28-piece orchestra.

Auditions take place at the end of August and rehearsals begin shortly after. In recent years, the school has staged all the following productions; Grease, High School Musical, Oh What a Lovely War, Oklahoma, South Pacific, West Side Story, Bugsy Malone, Anything Goes and My Fair Lady and Guys and Dolls.

Grade 6-8 Middle School Play

Students in Grades 6 and 7 enjoy the benefits of weekly Drama classes where they begin to develop their Drama skills while learning to work together. Topics across the two years include Mime, Improvisation, and  Eastern Theatre. As part of their experience, students create their own stories and work with actual scripts, as well as designing costumes and sets. Each unit ends with in-class performances to showcase the results.

Outside the school day, students in Grades 6 - 8 may participate in the Middle School Play, which takes place each spring. This is traditionally a non-musical play with parts for young actors of all experience levels.

EC 1 - Grade 5 Junior School Performances

In Junior School, students are exposed to a variety of expression forms. Whether is singing in a choir, playing instruments, dancing or acting students have the opportunity to showcase their artistic skills in a variety of formal and informal performances. Students participate in at least one performance each academic year.


Making, understanding and appreciating music from different eras and cultures is integral to the experience of ISB students.

The Music curriculum helps students develop an understanding and appreciation of music, as well as practical skills, thus enabling them to find in music a lifelong source of enjoyment, personal satisfaction and creative expression. The intellectual and emotional development of children, and the language learning process, are enhanced by a well-balanced music programme. Music fosters original thinking and is linked strongly with the other disciplines in fine and performing arts.

Music plays an important role in the development of transdisciplinary skills, building self-esteem and confidence, and teaching the importance of teamwork, cooperation and responsibility. It provides an opportunity for interaction with other areas of the school and builds links for outreach to the local community.​​​

Middle & Senior School

  • Campus Choirs
  • Chamber Music
  • Jazz and Concert Bands
  • Male-voice Ensembles
  • String Orchestras
  • Symphony Orchestra

Junior School

  • Grade 4  5 Choir
  • Grade 2  3 Choir
  • Group Violin Lessons
  • Junior School Musical
  • Junior School Orchestra

We are pleased to offer musical instrument and theory tuition after school by qualified private music teachers at all campuses.

We are proud to partner with...

Sinfonieorchester Basel logo

Sinfonieorchester Basel musicians provide expert coaching to ISB instrumentalists during Instant (Symphony) Orchestra projects. ISB musicians have also been given exclusive access to Sinfonieorchester Basel rehearsals. In addition, members of the Sinfonieorchester adjudicate the two annual ISB Music Competitions (Grade 9 - 12 and Grade 6 - 8).

The first special concert subscription series was made available to our students in 2017. In 2018/19, ISB hosted three concerts as part of a Sinfonieorchester Basel chamber music series. Two more are planned for 2019/20. These events are free and open to the public, and are followed by a reception at which audience members can meet the performers.

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The entire Music Program under the leadership of Mr. Norris has been excellent. He offers lunchtime music group rehearsals, after school music ensembles, Instant Orchestra short term ensembles, special outings to concerts, ongoing solo recital opportunities, AND competitions both on site and off-site. Mr. Norris is to be commended for his energy, enthusiasm, and his ability to engage others in creating such a strong community at ISB.
Grade 12 Parent (United States)

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Visual Arts

Visual arts are an integral part of everyday life, permeating all levels of human creativity, expression, communication and understanding.ISB offers a wide variety of opportunities and experiences for students to develop, engage and respond to the world around them including artist workshops, field trips, university visits, internships and art exhibitions. 

In the Primary Years Programme (PYP) in EC 1 - Grade 5, we connect students’ visual arts learning with the transdisciplinary themes of the PYP. Children learn through the creative process and begin to demonstrate conceptual understanding through various art forms. Students experiment with a variety of art mediums, techniques and processes through independent and collaborative work.

Grade 6 - 10 students in the Middle Years Programme build on their creative capacity and skills to make their ideas visible. They work on the skills, processes and reflection of artwork to analytically understand the process of art making and the purpose and function of art in cultures around the world. Students are given the opportunity to experience ‘real’ art and interact with the work through discussions, visiting artists, workshops and field trips. 

In the two-year Diploma Programme, students develop a body of artwork that demonstrates their individual visual explorations — both technical and conceptual — and display their collection in an annual Grade 12 Exhibition. Students are encouraged to work independently to develop their creative goals and subject/theme of their artwork while at the same time being guided through the three parts of the course: Part One- Comparative Study; Part Two- Process Portfolio; and, Part Three- Exhibition. Visiting artists and university representatives are regularly invited to ISB to demonstrate various art mediums and discuss careers in the arts. Students are also invited to take on visual arts internships and propose new ideas enrich the walls of our campuses with art murals.