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 action and animated films. It will utilize state-of-the-art post-production equipment at Ringling College Studio Labs’ Soundstage and Post-Production Facilities. Exploration of the aural world of film will open new avenues for students pursuing higher education or careers in the field.
The program will start Summer 2022 with the expectation of continuing in perpetuity. The College is offering this unique opportunity free of charge to Booker students.
Booker Principal Dr. Rachel Shelley noted that the sessions will open new doors for students.
“This fully aligns with Booker’s mission of college and career readiness, giving students more options for pursuing their dreams. We couldn’t be more grateful for our partners at Ringling College,” Dr. Shelley said.
Ringling College of Art and Design President Dr. Larry Thompson said he’s excited to introduce the young cohort to the realm of sound design and engineering.
“Many high school students go through their entire educational experience without any exposure to the abundance of opportunities in creative careers. We feel so fortunate at Ringling College to have such incredible facilities in which we can help inspire the next generations of creative storytellers, and to continue to further enhance our close relationship with Booker High,” he said.
The sound design program will take place over two one-week sessions in June. It will admit up to 15 Film & Animation students.
Other Ringling Opportunities Open to BHS VPA Students
Along with the workshops, the College is also gifting Booker VPA students with scholarship opportunities, such as underwriting five Summer Teen Studio tuition fees, as well as one scholarship covering all Ringling PreCollege fees. These will be open for students interested in any of Ringling College’s 13 majors, from Film to Fine Arts to the Business of Art and Design.
The arrangement is made possible through the generosity of Ringling College of Art and Design and further signals an even greater level of commitment in the longstanding relationship the two art schools have shared.
Powerhouse Paula Vogel Puts ‘Pen to Paper’
Wow! Anyone in the boundless presence of Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Paula Vogel during her “Pen to Paper” event may still feel the life force coursing through them. The workshop was like being plunged into a pool of writing wisdom.
Vogel is one of the most celebrated playwrights alive, having won nearly every award available to theatre writers, including the Tony award for “Indecent,” the Pulitzer Prize for “How I Learned to Drive,” and induction into the American Theatre Hall of Fame.
Yet you’d never guess it from her disarming demeanor and profound generosity. The workshop was equal parts writing guru’s gifts, life lessons, and bountiful encouragement.
Vogel offered generous advice on writing during her workshop. The workshop, brought to Booker through the Hermitage Artist Retreat, was a crash course on all things storytelling: character, plot, and spectacle were just a few elements she elaborated on.
Then came the challenge: a John Ringling “Bake-Off.” What’s a bake-off? Just like ones involving food, literary bake-offs involve taking prescribed ingredients and creating literature. In the case of this one, the ingredients are circus objects and people and dates important to circus magnate John Ringling’s life. Take all these, write for 48 hours, and then stop. Vogel said, “it doesn’t matter if you’re in the middle of a sentence. Just stop.”
Other than the challenge of writing the piece, Vogel offered empowering encouragement about life: “I celebrate your writing, I celebrate your lives, I celebrate your loves,” she offered through tears at the close of the workshop.
The message of the night was “everyone can write,” and how deeply moving for our Booker students to hear that from a living legend of the theatre. Her generosity, spirit and wit were gifts to all who were there.
Student Wins Superior at Solo and Ensemble
Congratulations to sophomore Dante Rutland for earning a Superior rating at the Florida Bandmasters Association Solo and Ensemble Festival for District 11. He earned the award and high praise from the judges for his work on the marimba.
Next up for Rutland: moving on to State Solo and Ensemble Festival in March.
Auditions for Upcoming Events Underway
Musicians Vie for Sweet Solos
While Death By Chocolate will follow its format of featuring ensembles like the orchestra and bands, the concert will also showcase soloists and duets. That said, musicians auditioned this week for those coveted pieces, and the results are in!
- Emcees: Yoshi Wilson and Bea Defrietas
- Piano soloists: Danae Tran, Cristobal Luguardo, Chelsie Louis, Tristan Tran
- Vocal Solo: Julia Stover (accompanied by Mackenzie Lopatinski
- Vocal Duet: Marissa Barnes and Bella Alberti
- Marimba Solo: Dante Rutland
- Plus, a small group comprising Anna Alarcon, Gus Baizabal, Edna Hernandez, Cristobal Luguardo, Danae Tran and Tristan Tran
Tickets for this exciting and indulgent event are on sale–get yours TODAY.
Theatre Students Get Farcically Physical for “A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum” Auditions
Meanwhile, Theatre students spent the week singing their hearts out and learning dance choreography to “Comedy Tonight” for the upcoming production of “A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum,” coming up on May 6-7 at the Sarasota Opera House.
For this production, the cast list will be posted early this week, and tickets will go on sale once it’s posted.
Death By Chocolate: In This Hour
Feb. 25-26 | 7 p.m. and Feb. 26 | 2 p.m.
The most decadent VPA event of the year, Death By Chocolate is a feast for all senses. Patrons can listen to fabulous music while indulging in chocolate, cocoa and coffee. This year’s theme, time, offers exploration into its mysteries, with songs about eternity, repetition, tedium, anticipation, and more.
A Midsummer Night’s Dream by William Shakespeare
Mar. 3-5 | 7 p.m. and Mar. 6 | 2 p.m.
Presented in partnership with The Bay Park Conservancy, this Shakespeare in the Park presentation of one of the bard’s most popular plays is sure to please. Exploring love in all its facets, the play is a comical look at the nature of attraction.