Presenting programs in the schools has been one of our most important community services under Sylvia Hunt’s leadership. Caldwell Fine Arts has provided programs in Jewett or at the schools for students in Vallivue, Middleton, Meridian, Boise, Notus, Weiser, Homedale, Marsing, Emmett, Payette, and Wilder. Students from Idaho Falls, Bonneville, Twin Falls, Jerome, and Ontario high schools have come for choral workshops in Jewett. Parochial and home-school students have also been served.
Since 1992, Caldwell Fine Arts programs have served between 9,000 and 19,000 each year.
In the past twelve years, almost all CFA season artists have also provided assemblies and workshops for students. The most popular school program has been the Nutcracker at Jewett. Others which have been outstanding include Faustwork, Seattle Mime, Rhythm & Brass, Hangzhou Acrobats, San Jose and the Portland Taiko, Dances of China: A Journey of 5,000 Years, Manding Jata of Africa, Obo Addy & Okropong (Ghana), Ballet Folklorico “Quetzalli” Veracruz, Scrap Arts Music, and The Perfect Gentlemen.
Choral music workshops and master classes have served high school students very successfully. Held in the Langroise Fine and Performing Arts Recital Hall and on the Jewett stage, concurrent sessions gave each ensemble quality time with these artists: Cantus, Chanticleer, Gregg Smith Singers, and Albert McNeil Jubilee Singers. McNeil, an authority on African-American music, was a particularly inspiring leader. The Colorado Children’s Chorale did outstanding work with Washington and Van Buren students who at each school learned a song which they demonstrated at an assembly in each school and at the evening concert. Such encouragement for singing!
The Missoula Children’s Theatre has delivered an educational opportunity to thousands of students in twenty-seven visits. Not only do fifty to sixty students participate in the performances, but also in the workshops within classrooms in selected schools every year. For some local families, parents find themselves on past-year posters as they come to watch their children perform!
Caldwell Fine Arts is especially grateful for our opportunities to serve those with special needs. The following is an excerpt from Donna Shines, a Caldwell H.S. Special Education teacher in the 90s, now the
executive for the Mentoring Project in Canyon County:
I am a teacher of special education at Caldwell High School, working with students in 10-12th grades. Many are struggling to find how they fit into society; many are disadvantaged; abused, and have learning difficulties. Yet, each and every one of them has beautiful strengths that need to be discovered and fostered. That is where Caldwell Fine Arts comes in. We have been given many unique opportunities for our students to grow in their awareness of the fine arts. . . Everything from viewing Tibetan Monks making an incredible sand painting, then performing and chanting to Ririe Woodbury dancers performing their art on stage, and coming specially to work with our classroom on movement, music, and dance.
We are excited for another season of our Educational Outreach Programs!