2021 TASIS Spring Arts Festival
Under the direction of TASIS Founder M. Crist Fleming, who was an ardent supporter of the arts, former faculty members Horst Dürrschmidt and Fernando Gonzales established the TASIS Spring Arts Festival in 1974. Held near the end of each school year, the festival is, in addition to a community-wide celebration of the arts, a final assessment for students in visual arts, theater, and music. “The Spring Arts Festival sets out to recognize the arts and to celebrate and support the unique contributions that the arts and humanities make to TASIS life,” explained Visual Arts Department Chair Martyn Dukes. “It gives us the opportunity to showcase, through performance and exhibition, the arts from across the Elementary, Middle, and High Schools. It involves virtually every TASIS student.”
Although ongoing safety regulations did not allow us to hold the 2021 Spring Arts Festival in its traditional form, which would include large audiences in the Palestra and Palmer Center for all musical and theatrical performances, this year's festival nonetheless featured a number of outstanding live performances and a brilliant Visual Art Exhibition. The events listed below were attended by small audiences composed of students and faculty members.
Visual Arts Department Chair Martyn Dukes, Performing Arts Department Chair Samantha Forrest, and all the talented students and teachers who make up their departments were excited to showcase their excellent work to the TASIS community over the course of May 7–23. Have a look below, and we hope you enjoy the 47th annual TASIS Spring Arts Festival!
Middle School Musical: Same Sky | May 7, 19:00
Featuring a cast and crew composed of Middle School students—under the direction of Mr. Matthew Frazier-Smith, Ms. Julie-Frazier Smith, Ms. Angela Dusing, and Ms. Tessa Bragger—Same Sky examines why we fear those who are different from us, the wisdom of children in their ability to bridge cultural divides, and what it means to be human. The musical was written by Stephanie Figer, TJ Liquori, and Michael Rosenbaum, veterans of the TASIS Summer Programs' Dedicated Performing Arts Team.
Same Sky premiered in front of a small student audience in the Palmer Cultural Center on the evening of May 7. The full performance can be viewed above.
Middle School Musical: Same Sky | May 8, 14:30
The matinee performance of Same Sky also featured a small student audience in the Palmer Cultural Center. The full show can be viewed above.
High School Spring Musical: Singin' in the Rain | May 14, 19:00
This affectionate spoof and tribute to Hollywood in the late 1920s was adapted from the 1952 film of the same name by the legendary musical-comedy duo Betty Comden and Adolph Green (writing credits also include Nacio Herb Brown and Arthur Freed). An epic in the making, surviving two postponed performances due to the pandemic, Singin’ in the Rain was directed by Ms. Samantha Forrest, Ms. Julie Frazier-Smith, and Mr. Jonathan Morris, who were thrilled and delighted to finally be able to present the enduring hard work and dedication of our High School theater students.
Featuring a cast and crew of High School students and faculty members, Singin’ in the Rain premiered in front of a small student audience in the Palmer Cultural Center on the evening of May 14. The full performance can be viewed above.
High School Spring Musical: Singin' in the Rain | May 15, 15:00
The matinee performance of Singin' in the Rain also featured a small student audience in the Palmer Cultural Center. The full show can be viewed above.
Visual Art Exhibition | May 19-23
This year’s Visual Art Exhibition included a wide variety of exemplary work produced by Elementary School students (guided by Ms. Caroline Rossi), Middle School students (Ms. Simona Bellini and Ms. Brigit Hurst), and High School students in the disciplines of drawing and painting (Mr. Martyn Dukes), photography (Mr. Frank Long), architecture and design (Mr. Mark Aeschliman), and ceramics (Ms. Hurst).
The exhibition was held in the Palestra, with students and faculty members invited to view the artwork in small groups over the course of May 19–23.
Elementary School Classical Instrumental Recital | May 19, 16:00
On the afternoons and evenings of May 19–20, High School, Middle School, and Elementary School students from the studios of Ms. Angela Perini (piano), Ms. Angela Dusing (piano), Ms. Dessislava Deltcheva (violin), Mr. Alessio Di Tonno (guitar), Mr. Daniele Bagutti (percussion), Mr. Jonathan Morris (voice), and Ms. Samantha Forrest (voice) performed for small student audiences in the Palmer Cultural Center.
A recording of the first performance, the Elementary School Classical Instrumental Recital, can be viewed above.
Middle School and High School Classical Instrumental Recital | May 19, 17:00
Middle School and High School instrumentalists performed in the Palmer Cultural Center on the afternoon of May 19. The full performance can be viewed above.
All-School Modern Instrumental Recital | May 20, 16:00
Elementary, Middle, and High School instrumentalists performed in the Palmer Cultural Center on the afternoon of May 20. The full performance can be viewed above.
Middle School and High School Vocal Recital | May 20, 18:15
Middle School and High School vocalists from the studios of Jonathan Morris and Samantha Morris performed in the Palmer Cultural Center on the evening of May 20. The full performance can be viewed above.
Grade 5 Conducting Workshop | May 21, 8:30
Students in Ms. Melody Tibbits Zanecchia’s 5th-grade music classes were instructed by Maestro Andrea Cupia for an Introduction to Conducting workshop that featured members of the Opera ViVa Orchestra. The repertoire included selections from famous works written by composers who students have studied as part of the Core Knowledge curriculum, including W.A. Mozart’s Divertimento KV 522, “Presto;” F.J. Haydn’s The Clock Symphony, 2nd mvt; and J.S. Bach’s Brandenburg Concerto No. 4, 1st mvt.
From Page to Stage to Screen: The Life of Literature at TASIS | May 21, 12:00
Students from High School English classes at TASIS presented and discussed films, soliloquies, translations, and poems created during the 2020–2021 school year. Four pre-recorded videos—an introduction from English Department Chair Dr. Christopher Love, student recitals of speeches from William Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar, and two filmed scenes from Shakespeare’s King Lear—can be viewed above.
Finale Concert | May 23, 17:00
The 2021 TASIS Spring Arts Festival concluded with a beautiful Finale Concert in the Palmer Cultural Center on the afternoon of May 23. High School, Middle School, and Elementary School student soloists and choristers performed a rich and varied program featuring selected instrumental and vocal works by J.S. Bach, A. Vivaldi, W.A. Mozart, J. Offenbach, F. Chopin, G. Puccini, and C. Bolling. They were directed by Maestro Andrea Cupia and members of the Opera ViVa Orchestra, in collaboration with TASIS Music Department teachers Mr. Daniele Bagutti, Ms. Dessislava Deltcheva, Ms. Samantha Forrest, Mr. Jonathan Morris, Ms. Lello Narcisi, Ms. Angela Perini, Mr. Alessio di Tonno, and Ms. Melody Tibbits Zanecchia and Conservatorio della Svizzera Italiano teachers Mr. Andrea Conenna and Mr. Roberto Mannino.
Performing Arts Department Chair Samantha Forrest was responsible for the Finale Concert's programming, preparation, and organization.
- FriMay07 Middle School Musical: Same Sky | May 7, 19:00