Arts in the Upper School
"To be an artist is not the privilege of the few; it is the necessity of us all."
The upper school fine and performing arts program is the culmination of the School’s comprehensive arts curriculum from PreK through graduation. Whether students are learning about past cultures through art or discovering their own sense of self expression, the arts are viewed as a central component of learning at Bolles. A qualified and passionate faculty allows students to explore and appreciate all that is possible through the arts.
Offering programs in chorus, dance, drama, instrumental music, and visual arts both in the classroom and in extra-curricular activity, Bolles upper school students are given the opportunity to shine through individual projects, school productions, and outside performances. Visiting artists, field trips locally and out of town, and invitations to perform at prestigious events and venues broaden the scope of the arts experience at Bolles.
Secondary to the educational value of the arts at Bolles, but certainly notable, is the success of Bolles students in various competitions and adjudications. The work and performances of Bolles students in each of the disciplines has earned several honors, awards, and praise within the School and beyond.
• The Bolles Chorus has an enduring tradition of invitations to perform at marquis events and venues such as the annual Walt Disney World Singabration, Carnegie Hall, The Kennedy Center, the Men’s Honor Choral Festival at Stetson University, among others.
• Instrumental programs in the upper school have come alive under the direction of Department Chair Don Zentz. Bolles band members have been recognized for their achievements through the Tri-State Honor Band and Conducting Festival, the Independent Schools Solo and Ensemble Music Festival, among others.
• A strong drama and theatre program offers the multi-faceted fine and performing arts department additional venues for all skill sets—vocalists, instrumental, visual arts, stage and technical skills, and more to bring a fall or spring production to life.
• The Bolles dance program regularly hosts visits from professional guest artists such as Arthur Duncan, Steve Rooks, Tina Heuges, Jay T. Jenkins, Matthew Rushing, and Crystal Frazier.
• Students work in various media in the visual arts, with works displayed in campus shows throughout the school year. Bolles students also participate in events such as the Congressional Arts Competition and have had works displayed at venues throughout Jacksonville.
• The upper school English department produces Perspectives each year to highlight the artistic skills of our students through poetry and short stories.
• Fine and Performing Arts students have the opportunity to travel to see performances to enlighten, encourage, and perhaps strike a chord of their own.
• The Phoenix Society annually recognizes upper school students who excel in more than one art at the School.