Performing Arts Spectacular
Annually, our performing arts department collaborates on two community performance events. Our Holiday Spectacular and our Spring Spectacular performances include our band, choir, theater, and dance departments working for a “spectacular” community presentation. We recognized the power of collaboration and now involve our community and other schools within our district. These are highlight performances that our community loves. At each Performing Arts Spectacular event, our students and faculty choose a group to recognize and honor. Most recently, we recognized our district police department. Other events have recognized families who have been touched by life-altering events and military personnel and families. During one show, we managed a video link from a military son stationed on a ship near Japan. In that instance, the vocalists sang “I’ll Be Home for Christmas,” which was the Home for the Holidays theme. There wasn’t a dry eye in the house.
Because of the success of the programs, our district and constituents approved the construction of a new one-of-a-kind, state-of-the-art, performing arts center to support the growth of our performing arts programs. We will be moving into the new facility in October 2018. The programs also involve a 100 voice district children’s honor choir from feeder schools for the holiday season show, and our spring spectacular now includes middle school honors performers.
The programs begin with a theme idea. Students then create and direct much of the dance and music for the shows. For instance, our theater students write, direct, and perform thematic comedy that weaves the shows together. The dance is student choreographed and rehearsed. The vocal and instrumental groups often write and present unique pieces that work towards the show theme. It is our gift to our community.
How does the community participate? In addition to the recognized groups previously mentioned, another example is a spring spectacular event with a country music theme. EC at the Opry included families from our community who were country music performers. These groups joined with our students for an outstanding presentation to an overflow house. There are heartwarming stories from the community families that are a product of these events. The community anticipates and looks forward to the programs.
Many of the community members are graduates of our schools in the district. As a result, in the next year, we are implementing the East Central Performing Arts Alumni Association. In partnership with the East Central Foundation, this program will function to provide support and scholarships for our students. Our community alumni who participate will be given alumni seating at our Spectacular events, provided with a decal signifying their membership in the EC Performing Arts Alumni Association, and spearhead fundraising events to support student advancement and achievement in the arts. It is a community partnership in action.
Overview of planning and execution process for this project
Sponsors/charities/volunteers/ other groups involved in the project and the benefits to each.
Specific Budget Breakdown
Typical expense per show:
- Music/License $700
- Props $300
- Advertising/Marketing $200
- Costumes $300
- Lighting/Effects $200
- Security $100
- Honoree Gifts (plaques, flowers) $100
- Misc $100
New or recurring project?Recurring
How did you update/change this project from its previous occurrence?
Measurement of the success/effectiveness of this project?
With the new performing arts center, we are expecting record numbers beyond the recent 1,000 – 1,200 attendees. Projections are to double the attendance with unique programming capabilities in the new center including lighting, special effects, etc.
Advice for someone looking to replicate this project in their own community?