More than 50 youth age 12-18 from Mississippi and neighboring states have completed the first week of CORE Arts Camp, a program of the Janice Wyatt Mississippi Summer Arts Institute (MSAI) at Delta State University. Over their two-week stay, campers participate in classes focusing on digital, visual, and performing arts for the residential arts intensive operating through the arts education department at the Bologna Performing Arts Center.
Classes featured at CORE Arts 2019 include painting with found materials, hip-hop dance, ensemble performance, scene study, comic book drawing, sculpture basics through cosplay, weaving the landscape, ceramics, and film photography. Campers attend many other classes taught by noted artistic professionals. When students aren’t in class, they participate in on-campus activities, including karaoke nights, yoga classes, tours of GRAMMY Museum® Mississippi, escape rooms sponsored by the DSU library, and field trips in partnership with the Division of Health, Physical Education, and Recreation at Delta State. More than 20 teens also participated in a tour of Delta State’s campus.
Thanks in part to a grant from the Mississippi Arts Commission (MAC), Erin Mulligan, a choreographer and accredited teaching artist from Greenwood, Miss., is leading three courses in modern, hip-hop, and Broadway/jazz dance. Also supported through MAC funds is Eileen Jennings, a Cleveland native and MSAI alumnus poised to complete her doctorate in music performance from Indiana University at Bloomington. MSAI also welcomes Robin Whitfield, a painter and naturalist from Greenwood, whose Earth Color workshops have been taught as arts education residencies throughout the state, including at the Mississippi Museum of Art in Jackson.
This year, more than one-third of participating campers received need-based financial aid from several sponsors, including the Lorena J. Rockie Smith Endowment, the King’s Daughters and Sons Circle Number Two, the Community Foundation of Northwest Mississippi, and Domino’s Pizza in Cleveland, MS. Additionally, McCarty’s Pottery of Merigold will provide free tours to CORE campers participating in ceramics courses, led by Sheila Clark of Volleys and Vessels pottery in Columbus, Miss.
To celebrate the completion of camp, BPAC will host a visual arts reception and camper award ceremony on Friday, June 21, at 7 PM. On Saturday, June 22, at 10 AM, CORE Arts campers will present a performing arts showcase on the mainstage of the Delta and Pineland Theatre at BPAC. All events are free and open to the public. For further information on summer arts education camps for younger students (ages 5-11), contact BPAC’s arts education office at (662) 846-4844.