Creativity in the Time of COVID

Phantasmic will delight you from the comfort of your home!

VPA’s FIRST LIVE BROADCAST! Preparations are still underway for the VPA’s first live broadcast, “Phantasmic,” which will be this Friday, Oct. 30, at 7 p.m. Under the direction of Mr. Nick Jones, the broadcast will appear as exciting as those you see in the professional world, and our Production & Design students are receiving a great hands-on opportunity to apply their skills to a new endeavor. Register here!

BAND MASKS ARE IN! The Music Department received their band masks today, which have closable slits to provide for more protection for brass and woodwind players. These new masks replace the disposable ones used previously, which were cut to provide room for the instruments to enter. Those inevitably ripped, making them essentially useless. These new masks were provided in part by a generous discount provided by local seamstress/mask-maker Cathy Kersten of MASKerade, and in part by donations of our amazing VPA supporters. Special thanks to Cathy Kersten, as well as Carolyn Johnson, Julie Leach, Bre Mulock and Clare Segall for their generous support of this important mission.

Sophia Coscia, level 4 Production & Design major, has worked on numerous VPA productions as well as several performances all around the region.

VPA STUDENT NAMED QUESTBRIDGE FINALIST: Production & Design student Sophia Coscia this week was named a QuestBridge finalist. The QuestBridge program is a competitive scholarship and college-matching program that connects high-achieving, low-income students with entry and full-ride scholarships at 40 of the nation’s most prestigious colleges and universities, including Yale, Princeton, and Columbia Universities. Less than 40 percent of applications annually become finalists, and of those finalists, about 59% are offered at least admission and a generous financial aid package. Just the clout of being a QuestBridge finalist can catapult applications to the top of the heap.

QuestBridge scholar profiles demonstrate stellar academics (top 5-10% of the class), high standardized test scores, intellectual spark, and strong determination. Congratulations, Sophia! We’re excited to see your light shine bright!

Art Department Chair Steve Strenk offered a portfolio development class to the VPA Art students at Booker Middle School.

ART FOCUS OF THE WEEK: VISUAL ART…TO 8TH GRADERS! In an attempt to be more purposeful in helping students prepare for the Booker High School VPA experience, we’re launching a series of outreach classes via Zoom to our middle school friends.

Always the trailblazer, Mr. Strenk pioneered this program this week with a class on portfolio development to help students begin understanding how to market themselves. Strenk’s class included topics like setting up still lifes at home, materials for art projects, and selecting, photographing and presenting artwork. Next up, Mr. Strenk will offer a portfolio review, so students can receive important feedback before submitting for the actual audition.

We hope this helps instill confidence in our rising artists, as we welcome them to join us and give them strategies for being successful.

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