Event features student performances and art

With the mentality of “by the kids, for the kids, with the kids,” the Salida Schools Arts Council presents the third annual Collage Concert. It will begin at 6 p.m. Friday, April 13, at Salida High School.

Formerly the Booster Club for the Arts, the SSAC is comprised of the K-12 visual and performing art teachers and coaches.

André Wilkins, high school music director, said the concert started three years ago because SSAC was looking for ways to fund scholarships for students pursuing a higher education in the visual and performing arts.

Wilkins said, “What better way to fund raise for scholarships than to use the skills and talents these kids are looking to pursue?”

In May two scholarships will be awarded to students pursuing a minor or major in the visual or performing arts.

Janine Frazee, high school art teacher, said, “There is a rigorous application process. Depending on how much we raise, (the scholarships) will be $500 to $1,000 each.”

Last year the SSAC awarded two $500 scholarships, one to an art major and one to a music major.
The concert is a culmination of the school year for K-12 visual and performing arts students, featuring performances by the Longfellow Elementary choir, the high school drama team and 5th- through 12th-grade choir and band.

New this year, there will be a combined choir of 5th- through 12th-graders and a combined band of 6th- through 12th-graders. The band will perform two pieces and the choir will perform two pieces.

There will also be visual art from K-12 students and woodworking projects from high school students.

Frazee’s advanced art students have created jewelry to sell at the event, and there will also be greeting cards for sale, made from students’ artwork.

“You know how people say shop locally or think locally? This is art locally,” Wilkins said. “These are the children of our community showing off their visual and performing art skills.”

New this year is a silent auction. Frazee said she got the idea from the Lake County High School. Gift certificates and gifts were donated by 38 local businesses. They include two year-long punch passes to Mt. Princeton Hot Springs Resort and a backcountry ski pack from Salida Mountain Sports.

Sarah Dreher, Longfellow music director, said, “It’s very exciting for our Longfellow students to perform at the high school. They are thrilled to participate with older students.”

Dreher said it’s inspiring for her students to see their peers continuing their music education in middle and high school.

Longfellow choir will open the concert with three pieces. Dreher said they are songs that will be part of their upcoming spring concert April 19.

“It’s like a warm-up for our group,” she said.

Following the elementary choir, the combined band will play, the drama team will perform, and then the combined choir will close.

“The bottom line is it’s going to be quite entertaining,” Wilkins said. “You’re going to see high quality art and hear high quality music. Also, you don’t need to have a child involved to come and enjoy the evening.

Instead of an admission fee, donations will be gratefully accepted at the door.