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1780 – The Official Blog of Transylvania University

2009 Governor’s School for the Arts session opens June 21 at Transylvania

LEXINGTON, Ky.—A total of 225 of Kentucky’s best young artists from 51 counties will assemble on the Transylvania campus on Sunday, June 21, to begin the three-week 2009 session of the Governor’s School for the Arts.

The latest GSA class is comprised of rising juniors and seniors from all corners of the Commonwealth who will receive rigorous training through daily seminars, master classes, lectures, hands-on workshops and field trips to various arts attractions in central Kentucky.

The student-artists will receive instruction in a total of nine areas: including New Media, which was added in 2008, those disciplines are Architecture, Creative Writing, Dance, Drama, Instrumental Music, Musical Theatre, Visual Arts and Vocal Music.

Nearly 4,000 of the state’s most talented high school artists from all 120 counties have attended the 22-year-old GSA summer program following a challenging selection process. Each year since the program’s inception in 1987, over 1,500 students have applied annually for one of the available scholarships, valued at over $3,000. Currently, 20 colleges and universities, including Transylvania, offer scholarships to GSA alumni.

The program will culminate on Saturday, July 11, with an all-day festival at Transy that celebrates the achievements of the young artists through performances that are open to family, friends and the public.

Transylvania and Lexington have hosted the GSA program annually since 2000 and recently announced an agreement to keep the program on campus through 2011.

“The arrival of the Governor’s School for the Arts on our campus each summer has become an eagerly anticipated event,” said Transylvania president Charles L. Shearer. “The GSA has really become the focal point of our summer activities and camps. Our 10-year relationship with the GSA has demonstrated that our arts and performance facilities are a perfect match for GSA’s unique and varied needs. And the presence of the students each summer adds an element of richness to our campus through their daily rehearsals and performances.”

Program highlights in 2009 include a keynote address on opening day by Stephen Powell, a world-renowned glass artist from Centre College, an all-school African Dance on July 4, a flamenco dancing performance by Graciela Perrone on June 26, an appearance by the Cincinnati Klezmer Project for an all-school dance workshop on June 27 and a performance by Harry Pickets, Frank X Walker and the Affrilachian Poets on June 29.

The GSA will also participate in a gallery hop to downtown Lexington on June 24, beginning at 3 p.m., and the entire school will travel to Louisville for a backstage tour of the Kentucky Center for the Arts, viewing the Kentucky Show, on July 3.

The GSA is a public and private partnership inaugurated in 1987 by The Kentucky Center for the Arts, the Commonwealth of Kentucky, and several private supporters. State funding for the program is provided by the Governor’s Office and the Tourism, Arts and Heritage Cabinet with further support from The Kentucky Center Endowment Fund, Toyota Motor Manufacturing and over 200 corporations, parents, educators, alumni and friends of GSA.

For more information, contact GSA executive director Heather Weston Bell at (859) 281-3509 or on the web at: