HP Arts Launches New Website

Highland Park ISD’s arts booster club, HP Arts, has overhauled its website and logo in anticipation of it’s 25th birthday next year. The site, which went live yesterday, includes a calendar for HP Arts events.

For more information on the re-launch and the organization’s upcoming anniversary, jump.

HP Arts — Behind the Scenes No More

In July of 2012, HP Arts will celebrate 25 years of supporting arts education in the HPISD schools.  In anticipation of this milestone, HP Arts is launching a new, refurbished website and logo this month.

“We knew we needed to do something to make HP Arts more visible in the community,” said current HP Arts President Catherine Lundberg.  “In anticipation of our 25th anniversary, we commissioned the renovation of our website and the creation of a new logo, rooted in tradition, yet with creative flair.  The vibrant new logo and refreshed website express our vision with renewed clarity.”

So what is HP Arts?  The group was founded in 1987 when a new principal for Highland Park High School arrived to find fine arts facilities that were too small, too few and outdated.  At the time, there was no specialized classroom for Art at the High School, and the Band, Choir and Orchestra groups were forced to share a single room for class sessions and rehearsals.  HPISD Fine Arts Director Linda Raya recruited a small group of parents who were passionate about arts education in their schools, and HP Arts was born, under its first President, Nancy Seay.

The rest, as they say, is history.  Since its 1987 founding, HP Arts has distributed over one million dollars in funds contributed by cornerstone benefactor La Fiesta de las Seis Banderas, as well as by individual donors.  Among other enhancements, HP Arts funded the installation of a TV/film studio at the High School, and replaced all the seats in the HPHS Auditorium through its “Take a Seat” campaigns.  HP Arts money paid for the refurbishment of a beautiful but dilapidated 1919 Steinway grand piano used by HPHS choirs, and provided a new curtain for the HPMS Auditorium.

Every year, HP Arts buys much-needed musical instruments for HPISD’s Band and Orchestra programs, and facilitates community donations of instruments through its “Play It Again Sam” program.  The group also funds appearances and workshops by local actors, opera singers and coaches, who work with HPISD students at all six campuses to enrich their arts education experience.  Already this year, the HPHS Theater classes learned the craft of stage combat with local actor Kent Williams. Later this fall, opera singers and Shakespearean actors will perform for elementary students at Hyer and UP.

HP Arts believes that the arts inform and inspire our children in a unique way.  The recent death of Apple co-founder and Pixar savior Steve Jobs calls to mind an example of a wildly successful innovator whose work would not have been the same without arts education.  Jobs famously dropped out of college, but continued to unofficially take only those courses he found interesting, including a course in the Art of Calligraphy.  In his 2005 Stanford commencement address, Jobs told the graduates that calligraphy “. . . was beautiful, historical, artistically subtle in a way that science can’t capture, and I found it fascinating.”  He confided that the first Macintosh computer, designed ten years later, would not have been the revolutionary, aesthetically pleasing innovation it was without his exposure to that college art course in calligraphy.

HP Arts does not think anyone should have to worry what the world would be like without meaningful arts education.  HP Arts’ new website showcases the many projects supported by the organization throughout the year.  Neighbors and friends are encouraged to enjoy the concerts, plays, film projects, debates, festivals and exhibits by HPISD schools, many of which are supported, in whole or in part, by HP Arts funding.   For information about programs and how you can help, please visit HP Arts at www.HPArts.org.

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