New Trier Fine Arts Association Awards Grants Benefiting Fine Arts Students

Awards Grants

Winnetka, IL - Students at New Trier will perform Kabuki, engage in stage combat, build community with improvisation, and learn hip hop, jazz, and modern dance moves and more thanks to the New Trier Fine Arts Association (NTFAA). Recently, the non-profit, parent volunteer group approved over $17,000 for grants that will help bring the outside artistic world into the New Trier classroom, as well as allow Trevians to travel both locally and further afield to practice their disciplines. All told, the grants benefit the 1,950 students who take at least one class per day in Art, Dance, Music, Theatre, Media, and Debate, and support the NTFAA's mission to promote and enhance the student experience in the Fine Arts.

"The New Trier Fine Arts Association is proud to support the arts curriculum at New Trier," said NTFAA Board President, Betsy Moerschel. "Our board approved $17, 112 in grants to fund additional programming across the arts disciplines including music, theatre, dance, debate, media and art. We are grateful to all donors who help make these grants possible. Our grant dollars will support visiting artists and experts, student travel to elite competitions and performances, enhancements to hosted tournaments and events, and much more. We are proud to play a role in helping our talented young people."

All student artists will benefit from this year's grants:

Art : Students will learn about kiln-glass and glass sculpture when Tim Tate and Michael Janis from The Washington Glass Studio in Maryland visit New Trier and host students the following day at SOFA; work with Chicago freelance illustrator Hugo Trejo as he shares his creative process and experience working on the business side of art with clients; participate in an annual all-day workshop in Raku, a Japanese pottery firing technique, with guest artist Carl Mankert; and visit the Chicago Botanic Garden to refine their nature photography skills.

Dance : Students will explore upbeat movement with Jon Lehrer, formerly of Giordano Dance Chicago and founder of his own company in NYC; work on an original piece choreographed and taught by Lucky Plush ensemble member A. Raheim White; practice contemporary/jazz with NYC-based Mindy Upin Jackson; learn improvisational movement structures with Rigo Saura of Hedwig Dance workshop; study hip hop techniques with Viola Elkins of Culture Shock Chicago; practice yoga with retired New Trier social worker and Advisor Chair Marla Tracy; explore community from a feminine perspective by studying diasporic African drum and dance with Tosha Alston, artistic director of Ayodele Drum and Dance; learn smart partnering techniques with Alberto Gonzales and Taimy Ramos; perform their original choreographed works in a professional theater in Chicago; study partnering and weight sharing techniques with members of Moonwater, a modern dance company focusing on the ethical treatment and humanity of dancers through collaborative creation; and work with choreographers Yariana Baralt Torres and Maria Blanco of the LOUD BODIES dance collective, which aims to create a platform for activism and sharing dance with all people.

Music : Vocal artist and educator Kim Nazarian from New York Voices will conduct workshops with eight different choirs; Greg Ward, professional alto saxophone player and Professor of Saxophone at Indiana University, has been commissioned to arrange Billie Holiday's "Strange Fruit" for the Jazz Department, and will lead students through a curriculum focusing on the history and ongoing impact of race in jazz; The Symphonic Wind Ensemble, one of only four high school ensembles invited to perform at the Illinois Music Education Conference in Peoria, will play there for the first time in over a decade; bass players from all of the orchestras, bands and jazz ensembles will have the opportunity to participate in a new Bass Ensemble pilot program, in which bass players will study, rehearse and perform challenging chamber bass repertoire featuring independent parts that include not only the bottom part, but also the melody and inner harmony.

Theatre : Students will work with Victor Bayona of R&D Choreography in a stage combat workshop; participate in a Kabuki master class taught by Professor George Keating of DePaul University and head of the Cherubs Theatre division; immerse themselves in an Improvisation master class taught by New Trier alum and professional improviser and director Alan Cosby; hone their improv skills and build community in a new after-school Improv Club.

Media : New podcasting recording equipment will enable New Trier to build its podcasting program for students and faculty and will expand WNTH's outreach to the radio community.

Debate: NTFAA supports the New Trier Trevian Invitational Debate tournament, in which over 250 students from 15 states compete in three days of policy debate, with New Trier debaters volunteering at the event.

Founded in 1976, the NTFAA raises money through donations, raffles, partnerships with local merchants and restaurants, and yard sign and car magnet sales to fund guest artist visits and workshops, summer scholarships, and financial assistance to students for participation in performances and excursions. Its confidential financial assistance to individual students helps to bridge financial gaps so that no student need forego cultural excursions and memories to last a lifetime.

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