St. Stephen’s and St. Agnes Celebrates 20 Years of Performing and Visible Arts

Hip Hop Dance and Tradition with Esperanto Bean.

ALEXANDRIA, VA –  What occurs when over 450 junior kindergarten by fifth grade college students get to spend a day attending workshops the place they’re launched to hip hop tradition? Whereas studying the fundamentals of city dance, exploring and training circus arts with an award-winning clown, juggler, and stilt walker previously with The Ringling Bros. & Barnum and Bailey Circus? And see an indication of gelli plate printmaking by a neighborhood artist?

As college students on the Decrease Faculty campus of St. Stephen’s and St. Agnes Faculty found on yestrday (March 16), you get an exquisite day of schooling devoted solely to the performing and visible arts referred to as ARTStravaganza.

Rebecca Gehlhoff, who has taught music and refrain on the Episcopal Day Faculty for greater than 25 years, advised The Zebra that the annual spring occasion was the brainchild of former Saints instructor Stephanie Kozenchak, who proposed the concept after attending a convention about the advantages of getting skilled artists work with college students.

That first yr, in 2003, the half-day workshops have been restricted to college students in second and third grades, and included solely two visible artists and two performing artists.

This yr, greater than 25 musicians, dancers, artists, and storytellers hosted 45-minute interactive arts workshops for quite a few wide-eyed and keen kids on the Fontaine Avenue campus throughout ARTStravaganza’s twentieth anniversary.

College students had the chance to discover Caribbean music and take a look at taking part in metal drums with the Tobago Bay Calypso Band, uncover Hawaiian tradition and music whereas studying to play the ukulele from a local Hawaiian, have been launched to flamenco dancing by a member of the Jap Shawnee Tribe of Oklahoma, and will observe the artwork of Japanese calligraphy.

Ukulele & Hawaiian Music with Moses Kamai

“We actually intention to provide the children a world arts expertise,” Gehlhoff mentioned. “Our objective is to show them to music, artwork, and dance from cultures and international locations all over the world. We attempt to have our artists replicate that world perspective.”

Alexandria-based musician Tom Teasley definitely exemplifies that world expertise. The percussionist and educator has collaborated with musicians all around the world and has carried out by invitation in Europe, South America, New Zealand, Samoa, and Korea. At his ARTStravaganza workshop, he launched the fifth-grade college students to percussion devices from totally different elements of the world. He introduced alongside the Center Jap body drum, the cajon from South America and Spain, and the balafon from West Africa. Teasley then blended historic and fashionable applied sciences by utilizing digital looping to play and report the world devices in actual time, thus creating digital ensembles.

World Percussion with Tom Teasley

“It’s been a superb expertise for me,” mentioned Teasley, who participated within the first ARTStravaganza and who has returned annually since, together with through the pandemic, when he offered a five-day residency to fifth-grade college students over Zoom. “I take pleasure in coming again as a result of I discover the scholars extremely and at all times very engaged.”

Past attracting performers and artists with regional, nationwide, and worldwide followings, Gehlhoff shared that she is especially delighted with the robust connections that the Decrease Faculty arts group – together with Matt Gehlhoff, Cindy Heid, and Jade Xia – have made with native artists.

“Final yr, a musician and dancer reached out and requested whether or not there was a workshop spot accessible,”she mentioned, “as a result of they heard a lot about ARTStravaganza by their native arts group in Lorton, and needed to be part of it.”

Throughout yestrday’s occasion, different workshops allowed college students to attempt actions like creating cherry blossom artwork, studying magic, and training theater improv. A selected spotlight for college students was seeing and studying about string devices performed by members of The U.S. Military Band “Pershing’s Personal.”

The day ened with an outside live performance by the go-go band Strickly Bizness.

When reflecting on twenty years of workshops, Gehlhoff shared that she is very pleased with the huge and wealthy number of performers and artists that college students have interacted with through the years.

“if college students began right here in kindergarten or junior kindergarten, by the point they undergo fifth grade, they’ve actually had a sampling of the intensive world of the humanities,” she mentioned. “Every part from Mexican otomi to Japanese calligraphy to every thing you possibly can think about underneath the solar. I really feel like we’ve achieved our objective of giving the scholars a full day of schooling dedicated to the visible and performing arts, the place they’ve distinctive experiences they actually couldn’t have with out an occasion like ARTStravaganza.”

Metallica Buys Alexandria-Primarily based Vinyl Urgent Plant

Publish Views: 0

Supply hyperlink

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *