Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Scarsdale Schools Music and Arts Roundup, 2016-17 Year-to-Date

Dear Parents,

Greetings from the Friends of Music & the Arts in the Scarsdale Schools!  Now that we’re solidly into the second half of the school year, we wanted to give you an update on some of our students’ musical and artistic experiences these past few months.  See below!

We also hope you will consider offering your support with a membership donation to Friends of Music & the Arts for 2016-17, because it is definitely not too late for your contribution to have a positive impact for all our students!  As you can see on this website, we accept online donations via PayPal, or you can print out a membership form and send your check to FMA, P.O. Box 171H, Scarsdale, NY 10583.

Here are some music and arts highlights of the year so far:
  • This school year, approximately 140 Scarsdale Middle and High School students participated in All-County and Area All-State Band, Chorus and Orchestra Festivals at Purchase College.  These students were selected based on their excellent NYSSMA scores last spring.   The first weekend in December, 4 students were invited to participate in the All State Festival in Rochester, NY, and 2 students were chosen as alternates.  Congratulations to all!
  • As of this writing, approximately 300 Scarsdale students of all ages are scheduled to audition in the 2017 NYSSMA Solo and Ensemble Festival, and another 150 students are planning to audition in the Piano Festival.  Best of luck to all!
  • Approximately 85 Fourth and Fifth Grade strings players joined forces at the high school in February to be recorded playing the theme from Dvorak’s New World Symphony.  They were participating in an exciting outreach project sponsored by the New York Philharmonic.  See the kids on video here.
  • From late November through January, parents were kept busy attending Chorus, Band and Orchestra concerts at each school in the district.  In December there were 7 concerts at the Middle School alone!
  • If you missed any of these concerts, check out the Video on Demand page on the Scarsdale Schools website, where concerts are available for your viewing pleasure
  • The High School Drama Club entertained us with the musical Grease in November, the student-directed play Almost Maine in January, and the play The Servant of Two Masters this past weekend.  Congratulations to all who contributed to these efforts, both on stage and behind the scenes.
  • From September until now, 7 high school students have been chosen as Artist of the Month by the art department, and another 13 students have had their works chosen for display at the StArt Regional High School Art Exhibition and the Katonah Museum of Art 2017 Young Artists Exhibition.  Kudos to all!
  • FMA hosted a Winter Festival at the Scarsdale Library on January 21, featuring musical performances by a number of Scarsdale students (and one brave parent!), and artwork on display which was selected for inclusion in the Festival by the art teachers at each school in the district.  If you were not able to attend the Winter Festival but would like to see the artwork, check out the photos here!
  • During the February break, SHS Band, Chorus and Orchestra members traveled overseas to Australia, Italy and Germany respectively, performing in a variety of historic and other interesting venues and taking in the sights and sounds of foreign countries.
  • Throughout the year, grant money from FMA has been put to good use.  New items purchased by each school with FMA funds include: a stringed instrument storage rack at the high school, mobile drying racks for student artwork in a number of our elementary schools, iPads for use in art research at the middle school, display shelves for student artwork at the high school, and more. 

Musically and artistically speaking, it’s been a great year so far!  Still ahead: a teacher appreciation luncheon for the arts faculty later in the spring, hosted by FMA; year-end concerts at every school in the district; and once again FMA will make year-end grants to each school for the purchase of “wish-list” items to enhance our children’s instruction.

FMA is proud to be a “cheerleader” for the arts in Scarsdale.  Your membership donation this year would go a long way toward helping FMA continue to offer support for the arts in our schools.  

Thank you for your support!

Kathy Gray and Jeannine Palermo
Co-Presidents, FMA