By MOHAMED FARGHALY
Instruments blared and unique artwork was displayed as the Freeport School District hosted its annual Summer Festival of the Arts live in the Freeport High School Performing Arts Center.
The Freeport School District Summer Academy of the Arts, which was started more than 13 years ago, has consistently offered children several stimulating and entertaining opportunities to engage in the arts through music, theater, dance, and art programs.
The Summer Academy of the Arts program opened up to the community this year on July 5th and concluded with the Festival of the Arts event on July 28th. Students would arrive at the school at 8 o’clock and begin their day of select courses that they had the option of choosing from.
“Around the World in 15 Days” was the theme of this year’s performance, which was attended by members of the Board of Education, Superintendent of Schools Dr. Kishore Kuncham, administrators, employees, and families.
Students got the chance to discover and study new musical forms of expression from many nations and cultures during the course of the program. Freeport students improved their imaginative, dancing, and literary abilities by studying and putting into practice numerous culturally specific strategies.
“Freeport Public Schools offers our students the best opportunities in music and the fine arts not only throughout the school year, but during the summer,” said Dr. Kishore Kuncham. “The amazing performances today were a fantastic culmination of the learning and growth that took place during this program for our students. Our dedicated staff helps our students to reach their full potential and showcase their talents. Today’s event was a thrilling experience for our students, their families and our staff.”
“We are proud of our Summer Academy of the Arts which exposed our students to the music and art of multiple cultures,” said Director of Arts and Community Relations Lynn Fusco. “It also gave students an early start on preparing for the upcoming school year’s musical programs and performances.”
This year’s remarkable event featured performances by the districtwide orchestra made up of students from 4th to 8th grade as well as, the district wide band, theater and narrative presentations, districtwide chorus, world drums, guitar, dance, and STEP performances. There were also unique performances by students who participated as interns throughout the summer arts academy.
A digital exhibition of student artwork showcasing diverse art forms utilized throughout numerous cultures worldwide was also shown to the audience. As guests arrived for the show, some of the artwork was utilized to adorn the foyer of Freeport High School.
“The different aspects of this program are all disciplines in the arts that these students don’t necessarily have exposure to throughout the school year. So, it’s really a special and unique experience for them to be able to participate in over the summer,” said Fusco.
This year, more over 200 students participated in the program, a significant number considering the pandemic rendered it inactive. Fusco believes that this suggests that more students will wish to participate in the program in the future and that the program will continue to provide a diversity of creative disciplines.
“These are students that really love participating in their art classes all year round. They want to go further, so if they play a band instrument, there is the opportunity to work with us over the month of July, and that enables the student to go further and deeper in the study of their instrument or art,” said Fusco, “We don’t necessarily have the opportunity in the structure of a regular school day to offer these programs, but over the summer is a different case. Students that are intrinsically motivated and interested, this provides them with the perfect opportunity.”