What’s Happening with Artsfest?

By Isabella Lahoue, Co-Editor-in-Chief

Each year, the students of LCA are given the opportunity to share the fruits of their year-long creative labor with our community through a night of performances and awards known as Artsfest.

Occurring annually in the spring, a typical Artsfest night begins with an awards ceremony for artists, musicians, and writers, followed by a roster of performances from LCA’s visual and performing art departments. This usually entails showcases of actors, playwrights, singers, musicians, and the tech crew, who all spend several months preparing to share their creative work. Artsfest is a chance for students — particularly visual artists who have their work showcased the least throughout the year — to share their art with the community in whatever form that may take.

Unfortunately, the news has surfaced that Artsfest will not occur in its regular form this year. The Blue and White editors consulted LCA Theater and Art faculty to seek out an explanation for the news. Mrs. Chaney, the Arts Division Head, explained why Artsfest is changing this year; this is the year of the musical (which occurs every other year), Guys and Dolls. In order to prevent that performance from being overshadowed and to diminish rising stress levels, Artsfest will most likely be rebranded into a week of spontaneous performances and artistic spotlights. Set design, lighting, sound, and many more adjustments are being made for putting together the musical, and the pressure to have all of this completed in time to reset the stage for an Artsfest would be on the shoulders of our Art faculty and tech crew. While these reasons are entirely sound, some students feel that Artfest is worth putting in extra time and work.

To hear some student opinion on the change, we spoke with students involved in both the musical and the art department. Annaleise Adipietro ‘20, who is acting in the musical, as well as a chamber singer and visual artist, told us, “I know it has been done in the past, having both the musical and Artsfest and both being successful performances… I think that Artsfest is something we could easily do.”

Caleb Hong ‘20, who acted in the last musical (Into The Woods), is starring in this year’s Guys and Dolls, and is also a chamber singer, says, “Artsfest is something we enjoy, and taking away things we enjoy doesn’t decrease stress levels. I’d rather have Artsfest than the spring concert, because Artsfest encompasses all the art disciplines, and I don’t think that’s fair to visual arts students because this is their only opportunity to show their work. We are more than willing to put in the work for it [Artfest and the musical].”

The idea behind the change from Artsfest into an Artsweek is to still have an outlet for art students to share some of their creative projects that don’t fit into the annual Spring Concert. Although few details have been revealed about how Artsfest is going to look this year, as of right now the general idea is that this year’s replacement will involve some of the key parts of a typical Artsfest, and next year there is the possibility of returning to the one-night production.

Needless to say, we will miss the annual spring festivity that is normally anticipated all throughout second semester — the one-night-only, three-hour full-house ceremony jam-packed with laughter, heartwarming performances, and applause. Still, there is new excitement bubbling up about its reboot into perhaps an Artsweek of sorts. The administration stands by their decision as one that has both the students’ and faculty’s best interests in mind. Although Artsfest will be missed this year, the spring musical is approaching as something look forward to, and the community is excited to see how Artsweek will be structured to show off students’ best work.