Category Archives: Fine arts

Kinder HSPVA students get first look at new campus

Excitement filled the air Wednesday at the new Kinder HSPVA as students toured the facility for the first time in advance of the school’s official opening day on Jan. 7.

Over winter break, the school will move out of its current campus in Montrose and into a new five-story building located at 790 Austin St. in downtown Houston near the city’s renowned arts and theater district.

“I think their mouths will be wide open,” HSPVA Principal Scott Allen predicted as he waited for the students to arrive. “They’ve seen photos, but that doesn’t do this building justice. They will feel so special that this state-of-the-art, one-of-a-kind facility was built just for them.” Continue reading

16 Kinder HSPVA students receive national recognition for talents

Sixteen students from Kinder High School for Performing and Visual Arts were named 2019 YoungArts winners by the National YoungArts Foundation, which identified them as some of the nation’s most promising young artists in visual, literary, design and performing arts.

Two Kinder HSPVA students, Deena Fahed – Visual Arts and Katherine (Kate) Kortum – Jazz Voice, were named finalists and will have the opportunity to participate in the 38th annual National YoungArts Week on January 6-13 in in Miami. Finalists are also eligible for nomination to the White House-appointed Commission on Presidential Scholars. Continue reading

Order HISD holiday cards featuring student artwork through Dec. 17 

Are holiday greeting cards still on your to-do list this season?

The Houston Independent School District is offering greeting card packages featuring the finalists and winners of this year’s student holiday greeting card competition, which feature creative artwork interpretations of winter landscapes, holiday traditions, and seasonal decorations.

The winners selected from each grade level – fifth-grader Valery Vazquez from Crespo Elementary School, seventh-grader Jocelyn Ajacum from Meyerland Performing and Visual Arts Middle School, and sophomore Allenique Matthews from Westbury High School – were among 31 finalists from elementary, middle and high schools. The winners were announced at a special ceremony this month at the Hattie Mae White Educational Support Center. All finalists’ designs are available for purchase through the district’s Printing Services department.   Continue reading

HSPVA principal receives top honor from national arts group 

The nation’s largest organization for specialized schools for the arts has named R. Scott Allen, Principal of Kinder High School for the Performing and Visual Arts, its top administrator of the year.

The Arts Schools Network stated it selected the Houston Independent School District principal for its most coveted honor, the Jeffrey Lawrence Award, because he exemplifies an uncompromising commitment to excellence in arts education and arts training.

“What an honor to be recognized for doing something I love,” Allen said. “Watching our young people grow into the next generation of artists is unbelievable, and this is what I do every day.” Continue reading

HISD to name student winners of 2018 holiday greeting card competition

31 finalists selected from nearly 100 entries this year

The Houston Independent School District on Monday, Nov. 5, will unveil the winners of the district’s 2018 holiday greeting card student art competition.

This year, 31 students from HISD elementary, middle, and high schools have been named finalists from a total of 94 entries. The 31 finalists were chosen by the district’s area superintendents. During a ceremony at Hattie Mae White Educational Support Center (4400 W. 18th St., 77092), the winning cards will be announced by HISD Interim Superintendent Grenita Lathan, who will select a winner from each school level.

The winning students will be present for the unveiling. All of the finalists’ holiday cards will be on display and available for purchase at HoustonISD.org/HolidayCards.

Instrument drive to benefit HISD school music programs

HISD is partnering with the CMA Foundation and the Mr. Holland’s Opus Foundation to host a citywide Houston Instrument Drive through Monday, Oct. 1 to benefit school music programs and their students.

So, round up those lonely instruments gathering dust in your closet or garage and put them in the hands of deserving kids who will truly enjoy bringing their music back to life. There are convenient drop-off times and locations throughout the greater Houston area. To find donation locations, go to www.mhopus.org/instrument-drive.

In addition, CMA will be hosting Maddie and Tae (www.maddieandtae.com) at Waltrip High School on Sept. 17 to talk to band students about futures in the music industry.

Designs for Westbury HS fine arts wing take shape

As work on the initial scope of Westbury High School’s bond construction is wrapping up, Project Advisory Team members met recently for the first look at design plans for another new addition.

The new $6.2 million fine arts wing, which is funded through surplus 2012 Bond Program funds, will be built on the north side of the campus on the site of the school’s old gymnasium and dining hall, which are in the process of being demolished.

Continue reading

HSPVA senior’s experience as a fine arts student has left indelible mark

It’s a bittersweet last first day of school for Kinder HSPVA senior Jorge Cordova. On one hand, he is excited to see his friends after summer break, but on the other, this will be their last year together. As a theater student who plans to be an actor, Cordova is thankful for his experience at the arts magnet high school.

“HSPVA has made a huge impact on my life,” Cordova said. “It has already opened doors for me both inside and outside of school. My teachers have always encouraged us to dream big, and I am already living my dream.”

It’s been just Cordova and his mom since he was 3 years old. “My mom is from Tampico, Mexico, and I was born here in Houston. She has been both mother and father to me, and she has done an amazing job. She has been by my side through some tough times, and I don’t know what I would have done without her.” Cordova’s mother, Alex Barron, has her own small housecleaning service.  Continue reading

Pre-K and K summer fine arts camp

A summer afternoon at Bastian Elementary School revealed a wonderful exhibition of paintings and other works of art, as well as a musical performance of songs by Pre-K and Kindergarten students who were wrapping up a four-week summer fine arts camp. The camp, which was based around the four themes of community, transportation, healthy eating, and friendship/fairness, was in response to an initiative from Interim Superintendent Grenita Lathan to include the fine arts in summer school.

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Brookline ES unveils new student-created mural 

Brookline Elementary School students have been working throughout the spring on an art mural that adjoins their campus. Artist Krista Birnbaum designed the mural for a 2,800-square-foot wall that borders the campus and is visible from the school. Young Brookline artists worked on the mural with Birnbaum during recess and on Saturday mornings.

The mural was dedicated on Monday, July 2, in a ceremony attended by HISD Trustee Sergio Lira, State Rep. Carol Alvarado, and Project Coordinator Theodore Wills, who is in charge of Brookline’s library, business partnerships, and community outreach and development.  Continue reading