ArtsFest committee anticipates workshops, events


Maria Shaughnessy

Marc Mulligan demonstrates tie-die in the 2019 ArtsFest workshop “Tambourines, Tangerines, and Tie-dye.” ArtsFest is a day filled with art-themed workshops designed by students, for students.

Katie Sasamoto-Kurisu, Reporter

ArtsFest, U-High’s annual day of fun and activities celebrating the arts is back in person and will be held Feb. 24. ArtsFest serves to enrich the U-High community through a day of art exploration and expression conducted through various interactive mediums. 

Opening ceremonies will be held from 9-10 a.m. in the Upper Kovler and Sunny gymnasiums. The ceremony will feature acrobatic performances by the Jesse White Tumblers and Chicago Boyz Tumblers as well as a dance performance by the U-High Dance Troupe.

After the morning ceremony, students will choose workshop activities in three periods. Period one will be held from 10:10-11:10 a.m., second from 11:20-12:20 p.m., then a lunch break followed by third from 1:20-2:20 p.m.

The closing ceremony will be held at 2:20 p.m. in Gordon Parks Assembly Hall and will feature the Dance Troupe as well as DJ and electronic recording artist Brian Boncher. 

Genres of workshops include food making and eating, dancing, painting, music, theater, program watching, and personal image or product creation using various materials. Some workshops may take up two periods.

This year’s program also demonstrates the excitement of resuming on-campus and in-person activities affected by the coronavirus. 

“This year, we kind of have to come back as much as we can to a normal ArtsFest,” said senior Taig Singh, technology manager on the ArtsFest planning committee.

The committee had to plan around certain precautions, such as room capacity limits, which necessitated more workshops. Despite needing to modify the usual ArtsFest schedule, planners have seen some benefits in this year’s program.

“We had to have way more workshops than in previous years, so we get to see way more people’s ideas,” said junior Hannah Maxcy, committee member.

It’s essentially an entire day full of appreciation of art.”

— Taig Singh

Additional components to ArtsFest include The Hunt and Art in the Dark. The Hunt is an ongoing group scavenger hunt around the school and the city in which students complete various tasks and compile a slideshow for prizes. Tasks will be released on Feb. 16. Art in the Dark is held the evening before ArtsFest and consists of performances, as well as interactive activities in the cafeteria. 

ArtsFest is unique in its structure and significance in the high school as the only student-led school day of the school year, elevating student expression.

“That’s what the main focus of the day is,” Taig said, “It’s essentially an entire day full of appreciation of art.”