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Frederick Douglass high school senior-Hairspray lead, Chloe Vaughn; Lou Dantzler MS Cheyenne Hill; FDHS Kierstyn Elkins
ICEF elementary dance students and ARISE choreography
Students of the Inner City Education Foundation held their third annual art exhibit this month at the William Grant Stills Art Center, showcasing over 100 pieces of visual artwork from grades K-12.
“Since ICEF’s inception nearly 20 years ago, the arts have been an integral part of our program,” said Parker Hudnut ICEF’s CEO.
“ICEF’s arts programs support our mission of preparing our students to succeed at the top colleges in the country. This event provides students with the unique experience of having their work exhibited in a professional art gallery and the ability to share their talent with the community.”
In addition to the visual exhibit, students involved in ICEF’s performing arts program participated in the show, with a vocal/ dance number from this year’s musical, “Hairspray.” Featured speakers included Leonardo Bravo, director of school programs at The Music Center in Los Angeles, and Louise Reichlin, managing and artistic director of Los Angeles Choreographers and Dancers. ICEF has become a staple in the Crenshaw community, bringing innovative teaching techniques to South L.A. students, sending a large number of them on to some of the top colleges in America. Art, said representatives from the organization, plays a large role in that success.
“Arts education is crucial to developing skills needed in the 21st century workforce,” they said.
“[A recent] report indicates that one out of eight regional jobs in Los Angeles is in the creative economy. Due to the lack of arts education in many K-12 public schools, students are not developing the skills and abilities they need -- innovation, communication and collaboration -- to be prepared for these jobs…”
“At a time when only 30 percent of students of color nationwide receive any arts education, ICEF’s arts programs are developing and inspiring young artists. They can envision the change our communities and the world needs to pursue their future confidently, to become the creative advocates and leaders of tomorrow,” said Amarpal Khanna, director of Visual and Performing Arts at ICEF Public Schools.”