By Deanna Maayaa
It’s hard to imagine high school without all the exciting special curricular classes offered. Performing Arts classes allow students to have time in school where they can express themselves and showcase what makes them truly special.
Classes, such as dance, vocal performance, band, and theater, mean a lot to students. When asked how beneficial being in performing arts is, Valhalla High School senior Karla Garcia said “it teaches students to not be afraid to put their work out there”. Garcia, has enjoyed her years of high school in the theater productions class as well as becoming the assistant director for the school’s spring musical Urinetown, and currently directing a student-run production of Shakespeare’s comedy Much Ado About Nothing set to open May 25, 2017. The opportunities given to her, have allowed her to find passion and desire to keep pursuing them. For Garcia, “in theater, using your whole body and your voice…can really benefit the human growth.”
Suzette Montoya, Valhalla Senior, points out how learning music techniques is beneficial to students in the future and how “Not all major can be doctors” and that “It’s what I’m majoring in.” Suzette plans on starting college at SDSU as a musical education major in fall 2018. The Vocal Music department, run by Paul Infantino has grown substantially over the past few years and envelops students in choral practices for seasonal concerts, providing students with sources to build their confidence in crowds all while learning music theory.
Performing arts classes can also be accountable to developing relationships among students. “Dance really helped me get a lot of more friends, and it really helped me become a lot more social,” says Senior Daniella Vega who is in the Advanced Dance class. Vega attributes dance to helping build her confidence, all while offering an escape from her stressful classes throughout the school day.
At every football game, there is always the support of the band lifting crowd spirits and encouraging our Norsemen to win. Matthew Buck, junior and symphonic band member accounts the performing arts as being a way “you get to be with your own family” and “get in touch with one another” helping build a stronger school environment. The instrumental department at Valhalla offers 7 different programs suited to all skill levels and constantly goes to competitions and offers performances for their music.
Through all of these courses, students can branch out and have the opportunity to go on unforgettable school trips such as the instrumental department did to Hawaii to perform at the 100th anniversary of Pearl Harbor and the Vocal music did to Italy where they had the opportunity to sing at the Vatican. The performing arts not only offers classes for student to take to make them look appealing to colleges, but they also present students new opportunities to explore the world around them, helping them becoming more culturally enriched.
At times where school funding for these programs is currently scarce, it’s comforting to know how students have so much heart to put into what they do. It’s always good to continue to support these programs by coming to see the latest theater production, attending the next band concert, enjoying a concert put on by the choir department, or supporting friends at the dance show. The arts, more than anything, create a huge impact on the school and bring students close together. These programs are a critical place where students can be accepted and supported outside of their regular core classes and embraced for a passion they have, all while learning unique skills.