Jessamine County students attend 35th Governor’s School for the Arts

Published 9:38 am Thursday, August 25, 2022

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The 35th anniversary class of The Kentucky Governor’s School for the Arts (GSA) concluded its historic second session on July 30th.

The program doubled in class size from previous years thanks to supplemental funding from the Kentucky Department of Education.  Growing from 256 students to more than 500 students, the tuition-free program took place during two consecutive three-week sessions, June 12th – July 2 and July 10th –30th, with students divided into each.

Both sessions were hosted at The University of Kentucky.

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During the three-week program, student-artists from 71 counties – including Jessamine – were immersed in a rigorous schedule of daily seminars, creative projects, master classes, and lectures. Instruction was offered in nine disciplines: architecture and design, creative writing, dance, drama, film and photography, instrumental music, musical theatre, visual art and vocal music.

The following students from East Jessamine High School attended: Riley Doan, Ailie Price, and Sokpean Uy.

The following students from West Jessamine High School attended: Katherine Antoniou, Shelby Bales, Cooper Bartlett, William Cordier, Connor Lilly, Sara Gdovka, Lisa-Bel Louis, and Natasha Menefee.

A Jessamine County homeschool student, Bailey Metz also attended.

Special activities and performances for GSA 2022 included a visit from Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear, a trip to Louisville for a free showing of the touring Broadway musical Hamilton, Harlan County native and roots musician Martha Redbone, former Kentucky Poet Laureate Frank X. Walker, pianist and author Harry Pickens, and a variety of Kentucky-based arts and culture organizations, including the Muhammad Ali Center, Pones Dance Company, Flamenco Louisville, and Clear Creek Collective.

Since 1987, more than 7,000 rising high school juniors and seniors have descended on a college campus setting to immerse themselves in an arts intensive environment, with cross-discipline learning, special guest artist performances and lectures, and the opportunity to access critical life-changing college scholarships.

GSA is a public/private partnership inaugurated in 1987 by The Kentucky Center (now Kentucky Performing Arts), the Commonwealth of Kentucky and numerous private supporters. Today, the vital funding required to make GSA a reality is provided by the state through the leadership of the Governor’s Office, the Kentucky Tourism, Arts and Heritage Cabinet, and the General Assembly as well as the Kentucky Performing Arts Foundation, Toyota Motor Manufacturing and more than 300 corporations, parents, educators, alumni and friends of GSA.