"ORCHESTRA? WHAT'S AN ORCHESTRA? " asked the 9th Grader.
Organized by: THEATRES DU MONDE
Imagine the shock of finding out that several of your high school students don’t know what an orchestra is, and have never even been taken to see a play. Now, imagine what you would do to change that …
THE FULL STORY :
The transformative high school field trip to the local University Music School went like this:
* University Music School Administrator: "... and on this stage we can fly the flats in and out, plus we can have a mini-combo set-up, or larger group set-up. AND, we can have the orchestra either sitting in the pit or on the stage … whatever you like!!"
* Ninth Grade Student who wants to have a career in music: "Wow ... Yeah ... That's really cool, but. ... uh ... orchestra? What's an orchestra??"
* H.S. Theatre Arts Teacher (me) who had organized this field trip: "You don’t know? Well, that changes EVERYTHING: I'm going to take you all to the orchestra! I don't mind if you end up *liking* it or not but, without the experience – without the EXPOSURE – you can’t ever make a truly informed decision. You’ve got to EXPERIENCE art!"
That day, I remained outwardly (relatively) unfazed but - inside - I was stunned that a student could get to the ninth grade without having been taken on at least one field trip to the orchestra. But as a new teacher at a Level 4 EBD (Emotional and Behavioral Disorders) setting, I soon realized that - for a plethora of reasons - my students have missed many opportunities that other students take for granted. Later, I discovered that several of my juniors and seniors also didn't know what an orchestra was, and that the majority of my students had never been to see a play. On the other hand, I saw that many of my students were, indeed, quite eager to start opening their hearts and minds to experiences and opportunities they previously had not known existed!
Moreover, this year is the very first time that students at my school have ever been offered the chance to take a class in Theatre Arts or Music! Thus far, I have convinced my principal to allow me take them to the theatre (including Mixed Blood Theatre and The Children’s Theatre Company), and to visit music schools and a radio station, as well as an arts institute. The students love it and, for many, the effects can already be seen in their eagerness to come to class and to participate in school work. … But, now the money has run out!
AND, THIS IS WHY WE NEED *YOUR* HELP!!!
We need YOU to help fund future field trips and Visiting Artists who can explore the Worlds of the Arts with our students.
Right now, we have an urgent need for funding because students are eager to attend one of the 'Young People's Concerts' hosted by the Minnesota Orchestra next month! They are also eager to attend a matinee at Penumbra Theatre, and to receive training in mask-making and stage movement from other local artists! Therefore, I am raising funds through my nonprofit 501(c)3 theatre project, Théâtre du Monde, to bring these experiences to our students. Our goal is to continue to provide MAXIMUM EXPOSURE TO THE ARTS to deserving and terribly under-served students for the remainder of this school year, through the summer, and into next school year!
HOW YOU CAN HELP :
• $230 (price determined by School District) will pay for a school bus to take our students to The Minnesota Orchestra.
• $230 will pay for a school bus to take our students to the Penumbra Theatre.
• $100 will take 8 students (accompanied by Education Assistants) to one of the 'Young People's Concerts,' presented by The Minnesota Orchestra.
• $160 will take 10 students (accompanied by Education Assistants) to see a matinee at the Penumbra Theatre Company.
• $230 will pay for a school bus to take our students on a FREE TOUR of a TELEVISION station, where they will receive career building information.
• $230 will pay for a school bus to take our students on a FREE TOUR of a RADIO station, where they will receive career building information. In addition, we are now work with a radio station to afford them the opportunity to hear themselves broadcasting positive news about themselves and their school on a ‘School News’ radio segment.
• $150 will pay to bring a Stage Combat and/or Capoeira expert to the school to work with the students.
These are just a few examples of the varied field trips and events that we are all working to provide to these very beautiful, very deserving and previously VERY under-served students!
We thank you most gratefully for any and all funds that you can contribute to this effort to give these high school students the opportunities in the Arts that they should have received years ago!