The Arts at Arcadia
Arcadia's Mission and Vision highlight the importance of the arts to the educational and personal growth of students. At Arcadia, students have a multitude of opportunities to get involved in the arts, through classes, projects, field trips, events, school productions, and the Arts Residency Program.
Arcadia has a robust Arts Residency Program that brings in talented artists to run workshops with students and produce a collaborative performance. The tradition goes back many years, with artists as diverse as Dessa, the Guthrie, Ragamala Dance, Arena Dances, The Flying Foot Forum, We Are the Willows and Chris Koza with Rogue Valley participating. Our students get a highly educational experience, creating a performance piece with professionals who are also great teachers.
This Spring, students enjoyed the return of the Arts Residency Program after a hiatus due to Covid and collaborated with St. Olaf grad and Twin Cities musician Chris Koza. Students helped create a multimedia performance piece inspired by Koza’s recent albums Sleepwalkers Part 1 and Sleepwalkers Part 2. 90 Arcadia students, 70% of the student body, spent six school afternoons working in breakout groups to develop the different aspects of the final performance. Students wrote and performed poetry, sang, played instruments like drums, piano, violin, painted a backdrop for the stage, and designed a poster and a T-shirt for the performance. This was the second time Koza and his collaborators have done a residency at the school.
Zabdy Espinal and Aylene Morales designed the promotional poster for the event.
Arcadia senior Kyrie Ross designed a T-shirt for the final performace with Chris Koza.
We Are The Willows, an orchestral indie rock band based out of South Minneapolis, made a mini documentary about their time at Arcadia in 2019.
Since 2010, Arcadia has had a strong tradition of participating in the national arts education program Poetry Out Loud. High School Advisor and Language Arts teacher Scott Grave runs the program at Arcadia. Through the program students practice important public speaking skills, build their confidence, and develop an appreciation for poetry and literary history.
On the right you can see the Arcadia students who participated in Poetry Out Loud in December, 2018.
The following students have competed at the state and/or national level:
Isaac Udelhofen 2020 (state finalist)
Bella Callery 2019 (state and national champion)
Anna Kochevar 2017 (state champion, national semi-finalist)
Bridget Moore 2015 (state finalist)
Arye Lovestrand 2013 (state finalist)
Andrew Wilson 2012 (state finalist)
Gabby Frenstad and Alexander Frost 2011 (competed at state)
Arcadia senior Bella Callery won the title of 2019 Poetry Out Loud National Champion and a $20,000 prize. The three poems she recited were: “Perhaps the World Ends Here” by Joy Harjo, “Abecedarian Requiring Further Examination of Anglikan Seraphym Subjugation of a Wild Indian Rezervation” by Natalie Diaz, and “Thoughtless Cruelty” by Charles Lamb.
The 2017 Minnesota Poetry Out Loud competition winner was Arcadia sophomore Anna Kochevar. She received $200 and an all-expenses-paid trip to the national Poetry Out Loud competition, where she reached the semi-finals. Kochevar received $1,000 for placing in the top nine at the Poetry Out Loud national competition and Arcadia received $500. Kochevar recited “The Gaffe” by CK Williams, “Dear Reader” by Rita Mae Reese and “The Idler” by Alice Moore Dunbar-Nelson.
In 2013, high schooler Arye Lovestrand placed 4th out of 30 contestants at the State Poetry Out Loud competition.
The competition was held on March 18th at The Fitzgerald Theater in downtown St. Paul.
Every year Arcadia celebrates Arts for Martin.
Students, Arcadia staff, and community members meld music, dance, spoken word, poetry and visual art into a performance that thoughtfully and intentionally speaks to the legacy left to us by Dr. King and the Civil Rights Movement.
The Northfield News profiled Arcadia's January 2020 Arts for Martin celebration, the last celebration before the pandemic hit.
Arcadia hopes to bring back this important tradition during the 2022-2023 school year. We hope you will celebrate with us!
Each advisory competes to create the best and funniest skit or video. The winning advisory gets the coveted Coconut Monkey!
Fundraising is a key way we ensure that our community survives and thrives.