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Exploring Art and Music in New York City

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An example of the artwork seen at the Metropolitan Art Museum.

An example of the artwork seen at the Metropolitan Art Museum.

John Blackwell

John Blackwell

An example of the artwork seen at the Metropolitan Art Museum.

John Blackwell, Web Editor

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   In early October, the IB music and visual arts students had the opportunity to learn more about their respective studies in New York City. This trip occurs every year; however, this year was special to many of the students, as they were introduced to a variety of new experiences.

    The day started out early, as students left WFS around 7 am. The students loaded onto their bus and headed to the city for an enjoyable day filled with learning. The classes were dropped off at the Metropolitan Art Museum, or the MET for short. They were given assignments to find examples of musical instruments and pieces of artwork from many different time periods, some even ranging from the 14th century! When asked about her time at the met, Margaret Anne Butterfield, upper school music teacher, shared, “One of the highlights was the newly opened fanfare exhibit, highlighting brass instruments from the museum’s extensive collection of musical instruments. What impressed me most was the photos that my students took that we will be turning into a collaborative class project”. This was just the beginning of the day. Students had an incredible lunch at the MET Café and then proceeded on their adventure.

    At this point, IB Visual Art and IB Music had split off to their respective classes. IB Visual Art walked over to the Museum of Modern Art, or MoMA for short. There, they saw pieces of art from the modern era. Marie DeVoll, ’18 commented, “We did a lot of research before so when we saw what we had studied, we were prepared.”

    While the visual arts students were exploring MoMA, the music students took their own course. After they left the MET, they took a stroll through Central Park. While walking, they were assigned to listen to various sounds in the city. The students would later use these sounds to make a musical essay. “We had a lovely time strolling through central park listening to different sounds of the city,” commented Jack Hanson ’18. The music students also walked through Strawberry Fields, which is a memorial dedicated to John Lennon of The Beatles in Central Park. Their final destination was the Metropolitan Opera House, where they were escorted through a backstage tour to see the props, costume house, and even had a chance to hear some of the opera singers practice. Sara Gaines, middle school music teacher, who also chaperoned the trip, shared, “It was cool having access to parts of the opera house that people normally don’t get to see. Even though it was a huge operation compared to a Friends production, it was still comparable to one of our shows- just bigger.”

    After the students finished up at MoMA and the MET Opera House, they met up to see the new musical, Come From Away. The musical debuted in June 2015 and has become extremely successful ever since. Come From Away is the story of the planes which diverted from the U.S. during the 9/11 terrorist attacks. The planes, which were full of a very diverse group of people, were sent to Gander, Newfoundland, a quirky small town on the border of Canada. The musical had an interesting balance of humor and emotion, backed by a remarkable soundtrack. “I really enjoyed the musical because it was very dramatic. I compared it to an ocean at one point,” added Mary Agne, ’18 when asked about her experience at the show. Along with Agne, it is safe to say that Butterfield enjoyed the performance tremendously.

    The WFS arts program wanted to make sure that students who attended this trip last year now had a different experience in NYC so that the trip would not seem repetitive. By introducing the MoMA and MET Opera House, WFS students experienced a new adventure in the Big Apple!

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