Among Harker graduates, it’s not unusual to find students who enter college with a pretty clear idea of their future careers. What is a bit more unusual are the ones who plan to pursue a career in the performing arts. This year the Conservatory graduated seven seniors who are committed to such a path.
“Making this decision requires total focus, commitment and a ton of work and passion,” said Laura Lang-Ree, K-12 performing arts department chair. Students cannot just let their high school resumes speak for them; most colleges require live auditions from those applying to elite, professional programs. Conservatory teachers add their two cents to counselor and teacher recommendations and often play an active role in helping the students gather materials, create first-round demo videos, and prepare for live auditions. Arts schools look for raw talent combined with potential for growth, driving ambition, good grades and the ability to collaborate creatively and personally. Harker wishes the best to the following students as they dare to pursue their chosen paths.
After criss-crossing the country for nine live auditions in only a couple of weeks, Michelle Holt has chosen to study vocal performance at The Blair School of Music at Vanderbilt University in Nashville.
Daniel Cho, recently seen showing his talents as Leading Player in “Pippin,” will attend Swarthmore College, where he will be majoring in performing arts education and possibly minoring in music or dance.
Adi Parige, who created such wonderful videos for this year’s fashion show, will pursue his dream of being a film director at the Rochester School of Film in New York.
Nirjhar Mundkur is combining his two passions, planning to take advantage of a crossover program between Cal Tech and Occidental in engineering and vocal performance.
Daisy Mohrman was one of 30 accepted out of 300 auditionees for a dance program at Chapman University in Orange, Calif.
Several thousand students applied to the B.A. program in theater performance at Wagner College in New York. Of those, 300 were invited to audition, and John Ammatuna was one of only 25 accepted.
Clara Blickenstaff will be double majoring in theater and business at the University of Redlands, where she received a theater scholarship.
Another highly competitive program is the Clive Davis School of Recorded Music at the Tisch School at New York University. Their website explains that the school “provides professional business and artistic training toward a B.F.A. degree for aspiring creative entrepreneurs in the music industry.” Christina Li was required to create a press package showcasing her performance, writing and business skills and was one of 30 to be accepted out of 300 applicants.