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January 10, 2018
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JP O'Hare

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New York State Summer School of the Arts Receives Award

School of Theatre Recognized by New York State Theatre Education Association for its Commitment to Furthering Educational Theater

The New York State Summer School of the Arts (NYSSSA) was honored recently for its outstanding work within the School of Theatre by the New York State Theater Education Association (NYSTEA) at the annual NYSTEA Conference in Callicoon, NY, Commissioner MaryEllen Elia announced today. The award is granted in recognition for NYSSSA’s commitment to furthering educational theatre and supporting the Student Conference.

“The New York State Summer School of the Arts is a truly remarkable program, that embodies one of the very best examples of our goal of educating the whole child,” Board of Regents Chancellor Betty A. Rosa said. “I’m so pleased that this excellent and diverse program is receiving the recognition it so richly deserves.”

“This honor is testament to the valuable, intensive experience that the School of Theatre provides for New York’s students,” Commissioner Elia said. “Where else can students spend weeks with professional actors, directors and playwrights, among others? NYSSA staff truly provide the experience of a lifetime for these high schoolers.”

“We are honored to receive this award and to join past recipients who have made an incredible impact in theater education.” said Molly Hennighausen, Director of the New York State Summer School of the Arts, while accepting the award. “The NYSTEA student conference is an amazing opportunity for students from across New York State to collaborate with one another and learn new skills. We are excited to be a part of the Student Conference and to continue to impact students’ lives through high quality theatrical training.”

The New York State Theatre Education Association is a statewide organization that promotes and supports theater education for students in grades pre-K through 12. Past award recipients include Hazel and John Goldstein, founders of the NYSTEA Student Conference and owners of Marlu Costumes, and Jim Hoare from Theatrical Rights Worldwide. The annual Student Conference is an opportunity for approximately 800 high school students from across New York State to come together for a weekend of learning and peer interaction. Students attend workshops given by colleges, universities, and theater professionals, while also networking and experiencing a variety of performances.

The 2018 NYSSSA School of Theatre will be held in July 8 – August 4 at SUNY Delhi. The program provides students with intensive instruction in acting, movement, improvisation and voice, working side by side with nationally recognized faculty. Under the artistic direction of Margaret Denithorne, daily classes include acting, improvisation, scene study, voice, and movement, along with guest artist workshops in stage combat, mask, Shakespeare, playwriting, tango, directing, and acting technique. More information and a list of auditions sites and dates can be found at the School of Theatre website.

The New York State Summer School of the Arts, a program of the New York State Education Department, provides over 400 of New York’s most talented students the opportunity to study with professionals in the visual and performing arts. Founded in 1970, the summer arts residential program offers highly competitive pre-professional training to promising artists from a variety of disciplines. Four weeks of intensive work and interaction with internationally acclaimed artists and performing arts companies, such as the New York City Ballet and the Philadelphia Orchestra, give students a unique opportunity to experience the rigors of their chosen arts field. Each program culminates in a public final presentation or exhibition. Students in grades 8-12 throughout New York State are encouraged to apply. NYSSSA is comprised of seven component schools: Theatre, Ballet, Modern Dance, Orchestral Studies, Choral Studies, Visual Arts, and Media Arts. Auditions begin in January and will be held across the state. A schedule of audition sites and application materials are available at the NYSSSA website.

Students are accepted into NYSSSA through a competitive audition and review process conducted by the artistic staff. Tuition rates are maintained at a modest level and tuition assistance is available, enabling every student who qualifies the opportunity to participate in the program.

NYSSSA serves an important need to foster and enhance the artistic abilities of the state’s most gifted young artists regardless of race, religion or economic status. Follow-up studies on the program have identified former students who now hold positions within top professional companies around the world.