Newsletters

Booker VPA sends weekly newsletters to our parents to update you on current happenings in our programs. You can access a copy by clicking on the date below.

Creativity in the Time of Covid–May 15, 2022

‘Last Rung’ Premieres at Ringling College The Stephen King Dollar Baby Film ‘The Last Rung’ enjoyed an exclusive premiere at the Larry Thompson Education Center on Ringling’s campus. The audience–limited to cast, crew, and their families–enjoyed the film and Q&A. The film is the culmination of nearly three years of work, beginning with applying for the Dollar Baby program. King […]

Creativity in the Time of Covid–May 8, 2022

Happy Mother’s Day! We are grateful to the mothers, parents and guardians who entrust Booker High VPA with the nurturing of their children’s talents. Here’s to an excellent day celebrating the sacrifice, limitless love, and strength mothers provide to the world. Fantastic Forum Awes Audiences “A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum” enjoyed a short but electrifying […]

Creativity in the Time of Covid–May 1, 2022

The Sky’s the Limit: “Infinite” Breaks the Mold The VPA Music Department’s final music showcase, “Infinite,” served up a seemingly endless array of fantastic music, most playing on the theme of boundlessness. From an energetic orchestral “Star Wars” theme song, to a roof raising version of Lynyrd Skynyrd’s “Freebird,” the show was nonstop awe. VPA Music co-chair Alex Zickafoose dreamed […]

Creativity in the Time of Covid–April 24, 2022

Animator Selected as Ringling Pre-College Scholarship Recipient Congratulations to Animation sophomore Delcy Calderon, who was selected to receive a full scholarship to the Ringling College pre-college program. The pre-college program is an intensive 4-week experience. Students stay on the Ringling campus and immerse themselves in their art and college life. Delcy will study Visual Development/Concept Art. At this point, she […]

Creativity in the Time of Covid–April 10, 2022

Zaine Lodhi Wins Big Wow! VPA Art alum Zaine Lodhi’s meteoric rise to prominence has surpassed another milestone. He was one of seven artists selected to be honored in Hollywood for the Illustrators of the Future award ceremony. The international contest attracts the best fantasy illustrators in the world. Zaine’s illustrations for the sci-fi book, “Agatha’s Monsters,” earned him the […]

Creativity in the Time of Covid–April 3, 2022

Fools RULE! The Spring Dance concert, “Fool*ish,” offered plenty of frolicsome joy for all. From laugh-out-loud pieces about the tomfoolery of smart phones to sweet and silly adaptations of children’s books, the show had something for everyone. Audience members were invited to explore their own tendencies of foolishness. The show featured choreography by professionals Courtney Smith Inzalaco, Jenna Outerbridge, Kris […]

Creativity in the Time of Covid–Mar. 27, 2022

Encore! Booker VPA Artists at Art Ovation Hotel Booker VPA has enjoyed a fruitful relationship with the Art Ovation Hotel downtown. This year’s partnering was kicked off this week with VPA Artists Ella Swartz and Jinx Molina exhibiting artworks in the lobby. Swartz and Molina are the featured artists in residence, which means they are artmaking as a public attraction. […]

Creativity in the Time of Covid–Mar. 13, 2022

Yassss, Yissy! Cuban percussion jazz artist Yissy Garcia heated up the school week for our VPA Music students. First in a masterclass on Mar. 9, Yissy and her band performed and shared the stories of their journey. Their jams were astonishing–at once precise and also exuberant–and the students soaked it all in, participating through clapping and dancing. It was an […]

Creativity in the Time of Covid–March 6, 2022

VPA Art Contributes to Commemoration The VPA Art Department’s played a vital role in the celebration of Dr. Laura Kingsley, former assistant superintendent and chief education officer. The commissioned media center mural was revealed on March 2 the event that paid tribute to the legacy of Dr. Laura Kingsley. Kingsley retired in 2021 from her most recent post in district […]

Creativity in the Time of Covid–Feb. 27, 2022

At Last! Death By Chocolate Delivers The wildly popular Death By Chocolate was a hit again this year. With a theme of time–fleeting and everchanging–Death By Chocolate: In This Hour offered plenty of sweetness. Here’s a look: The Arts as Impact The BHS Student Government Association presented “Culture Day” on Feb. 25 during both lunches. The presentation included singing, dancing, […]

Creativity in the Time of Covid–Feb. 20, 2022

VPA Art Student Earns Top Mark on AICE Portfolio Congratulations to VPA Art junior Alanna Hutton, whose portfolio earned Cambridge International Scholar “Top in the World” award for having scored the best out of all candidates submitting a portfolio in Summer 2021. Hutton worked under the supervision of Ms. Cathie Janssen to complete the 2-D portfolio. “Top in the World” […]

Creativity in the Time of Covid–Feb. 13, 2022

Ringling College of Art and Design Deepens Partnership with VPA Ringling College of Art and Design will offer a captivating summer workshop in sound design and engineering to students enrolled in the Booker High School Visual and Performing Arts (VPA) Film & Animation Department. The workshop, designed exclusively for Booker VPA students, will cover the art of sound in live […]

Creativity in the Time of Covid–Feb. 6, 2022

Animation Student Earns Regional Scholastic Art and Writing Awards Congratulations to Animation senior Alaya Knowlton for her recognition in the Scholastic Art and Writing Awards regional contest. Knowlton won the following awards: Gold Key award, American Visions nomination for her animated short, “Adrift” Gold Key award for her digital artwork, “Her Quintessence” Silver Key awards for three additional artworks, “A […]

Creativity in the Time of Covid–Jan. 30, 2022

I-CONNICK! VPA Students Learn from an Icon Students were given an opportunity of a lifetime on Thursday when they enjoyed an unscripted masterclass with jazz legend and sensation of stage and screen Harry Connick, Jr. The event was made possible through the generosity of the Van Wezel Foundation and its passionate donors. During the conversation, the Emmy and Grammy-award-winning Connick […]

Creativity in the Time of Covid–Jan. 23, 2022

Accolades in Art! Ella Swartz’s work selected for Embracing Our Differences Since 2004, Embracing Our Differences has used art and prose to promote diversity and inclusion. Each year, the organization calls for art and quotes to include in its annual exhibit, which is one of the hallmarks of Sarasota’s seasonal calendar. This year, VPA Art senior Ella Swartz’s work, “Unbound”, […]

Creativity in the Time of Covid–Jan. 16, 2022

We honor the legacy and teachings of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Creativity in the Time of Covid–Dec. 19, 2021

Wishing all of you a joy-filled holiday break.

Creativity in the Time of Covid–Dec. 12, 2021

Cyclone swept through FCCI Insurance Group with tidings of comfort and joy!

Creativity in the Time of Covid–Dec. 5, 2021

Danae Tran mesmerizes audiences with her Vivaldi solo.

Creativity in the Time of Covid–Nov. 28, 2021

VPA Welcomes Lizzi Nehls as Production Manager The VPA is thrilled to announce the onboarding of Lizzi Nehls as the newest member of the Booker VPA team. Ms. Nehls is taking over as the production manager. With experience including gigs on and off Broadway in stage management and production, Ms. Nehls brings a wealth of expertise to the role. Most […]

Creativity in the Time of Covid–Nov. 14, 2021

How do your relationships shape the world-at-large? Lots to ponder as Dance examines the timely territory of connectedness.

Creativity in the Time of Covid–Nov. 7, 2021

Booker High Teacher Named District High School Teacher of the Year Booker High School Spanish teacher Loridia Urquiza was surprised on Thursday with the announcement that she was named Sarasota County’s high school teacher of the year. Mrs. Urquiza teaches Spanish and has led several initiations to increase visibility and appreciation of Hispanic students at Booker and in the larger […]

Creativity in the Time of Covid–Oct. 31, 2021

HOCO 2021–A Week in Pictures This week was Homecoming Spirit week, a time to unify and celebrate the culture of Booker High School. It was a fantastic, fun week, with spirit dress-up days, a door decorating contest, and a pep rally in Tornado Alley. And then, of course, there was the Homecoming Game against the Hardee Wildcats. With the cool […]

Creativity in the Time of Covid–Oct. 24, 2021

VPA goes pink for breast cancer awareness.

Creativity in the Time of Covid–Oct. 17, 2021

Greek Freaks: Adonis and Persephone attempt to find love.

Creativity in the Time of Covid–Oct. 10, 2021

Dance Students Wrap Week with UF Master Class University of Florida Associate Professor of Dance and Choreography Trent Dwight Williams visited the VPA Dance studios to offer a master class on Oct. 8. The students were ebullient as they learned his choreography. Williams emphasized important dance concepts, like creating the illusion of lightness, with humor. Of weightlessness, he quipped, “If […]

Creativity in the Time of Covid–Oct. 3, 2021

It’s fall, y’all! Time for still life study of autumn gourds in Film & Animation class.

Creativity in the Time of COVID–September 26, 2021

Electric opener: Saturday Night Fever! delivers excitement and joy!

Creativity in the Time of Covid–Sept. 19, 2021

3-D artists create sculptures of imagination and whimsy.

Creativity in the Time of Covid–Sept. 12, 2021

Get your tickets for a night in September you’ll be sure to remember! On sale Monday, Sept. 13!

Creativity in the Time of Covid–Aug. 22, 2021

Masks made mandatory again, but they need not resemble this Black Plague-era face covering.

Creativity in the Time of Covid–Aug. 15, 2021

Week one flew by! Let’s soar to new heights in 2021!

Creativity in the Time of Covid–August 9, 2021

Away we go! Here comes the 2021-22 school year.

Creativity in the Time of Covid–June 13, 2021

Gold Shines! On Friday night, all that glittered was gold, as the VPA faculty dazzled an audience of Booker students, alum, and other friends of the VPA with a stunning array of performances. “Gold: A Faculty Showcase” had plenty of delights on tap: Courtney Smith, performing hip hop choreographed by Kris Powell; Amanda Nix leading a rock band as she […]

Creativity in the Time of Covid–June 6, 2021

They did it!

Creativity in the Time of Covid–May 31, 2021

Reflecting on the sacrifices that have been at the service of our great nation.

Creativity in the Time of Covid–May 23, 2021

The sound of music: this week was dominated with energetic and spectacular music events in three outdoor concerts.

Creativity in the Time of Covid–May 16, 2021

VPA teachers take the stage to raise spirits & earn funds.

Creativity in the Time of Covid–May 9, 2021

Thanks to all the mothers and to those who take on the role of mothering, mentoring, and nurturing our precious children.

Creativity in the Time of Covid–May 2, 2021

VPA Art Senior Thesis Show opens this week–May 5!

More dates and events on the horizon! Get these into your calendar today!

Creativity in the Time of Covid–April 25, 2021

Kingdom of Solitaire a smashing success!

Creativity in the Time of Covid–April 18, 2021

‘Circle of Truth’ delights; AICE testing information for 2021 exam series in this edition

Creativity in the Time of Covid–April 11, 2021

Kaity Cairo wins scholarship in the name of VPA Theatre Alum Sam Mossler.

Creativity in the Time of Covid–April 3, 2021

Senior information/dates in this edition!

Creativity in the Time of COVID-March 27, 2021

Film crews prepare for location shooting for Stephen King adaptation.

Creativity in the Time of Covid–March 14, 2021

Enjoy a happy, healthy Spring Break!

Creativity in the Time of Covid–March 7, 2021

Our heartfelt thanks to the inimitable Nothing Bundt Cakes, whose donation of 400 cake samples made Death by Chocolate that much sweeter!

Creativity in the Time of Covid–Feb. 28, 2021

Countdown to Spring Break! The break is March 15-19.

Creativity in the Time of Covid–Feb. 21, 2021

Sweet romance is back: Death By Chocolate in the works

Creativity in the Time of Covid–Feb. 14, 2021

Celebrating Black History Month!

Creativity in the Time of Covid-Feb. 7, 2021

The VPA salutes the contributions of Black American artists as we observe Black History Month.

Creativity in the Time of Covid-Jan. 31, 2021

Head over heels for our candidates! Ms. Smith demonstrates a phrase.

Creativity in the Time of Covid–Jan. 24, 2021

New beginnings, new hope

Creativity in the Time of Covid-Jan. 17, 2021

“I have a dream…”

Creativity in the Time of COVID-Jan. 10, 2021

Here’s to all the best in 2021!

Creativity in the Time of Covid-Dec. 20, 2020

We Made It! Here we are on the eve of our winter holiday break, a much-anticipated moment for us all to rest and rejuvenate, spend time with loved ones (hopefully, in our bubble!), and reflect on all that 2020 has brought. What a tumultuous year! Who would have known, this time last year, that life as we know it would […]

Creativity in the Time of Covid-Dec. 13, 2020

Holiday wishes from VPA Music will come in the form of two season-themed concerts

Creativity in the Time of Covid-Dec. 6, 2020

Oh, the places he’ll go…
Myles Summerlin qualifies for the top Take Stock in Children scholarship.

Creativity in the Time of Covid-Nov. 29, 2020

We give thanks to our incredible VPA community!

Creativity in the Time of Covid-Nov. 22, 2020

BHS College Adviser Lem Andrews needs YOU! Help us fulfill our goal of 100% VPA FAFSA completion!

Creativity in the Time of Covid-Nov. 15, 2020

This past week presents our “Storm Edition”: storms damage, but they also can offer astonishing and awesome forces to witness…

Creativity in the Time of Covid-Nov. 8, 2020

Theatre sweeps Florida Theatre Conference with The Bone Orchard virtual performance.

Creativity in the Time of Covid

VPA holds farewell performance in preparation for renovation.

Creativity in the Time of COVID

Time’s a-tickin’! Register for our LIVE broadcast of Phantasmic now!