SPAC Unveils New Learning Library Bringing Free Arts Education Content to Students, Families & Educators
Saratoga Performing Arts Center announced that it has unveiled its new Learning Library, created to bring free original arts educational content to students, families and educators at a time when previously scheduled in-school presentations and classes are not feasible due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
As part of the Center’s mission to provide meaningful educational programming to the community while also supporting local artists, the videos and exercises feature more than 25 professional musicians and dancers who have been affected by the pandemic such as Ellen Sinopoli Dance Company, professional stepping company Soul Steps and Caroga Arts Collective, as well as former Broadway performers, composers and local storytellers.
“We have completely re-imagined how our educational programming can reach students, families and educators during these difficult times when in-person demonstrations and classes aren’t possible. Last year our programs served more than 49,000 students, however, with this new virtual platform, we have the opportunity to bring enriching, unique arts education content to even more students in the region and beyond,” said Elizabeth Sobol, SPAC’s President and CEO.
Curated by SPAC with dedicated lessons for students of all ages, the video sessions include: “SPAC Breaks,” a variety of introductory lessons to exercise the creative mind; “Stories that Move,” featuring short stories with dance instruction by Ellen Sinopoli Dance Company; “Kitchen Floor Dance Class,” led by former Broadway performer and SPAC’s Senior Director of Education, Dennis Moench, and the “Virtual Dance Lab,” advanced choreography-teaching sessions in a variety of genres. In addition to the video lessons, SPAC has created “Printable SPAC-tivities,” featuring exercises and coloring pages that teach fundamental music and dance concepts.
“Heartbroken at the prospect of canceling all of our arts education programming in schools for the spring season, SPAC’s education team was compelled to adapt quickly and focus all of our energy into creating these online opportunities for the 12,000+ students that we were scheduled to visit. We are thrilled that we can still reach our partnering schools’ and non-profit organizations’ students with resources that we hope they will find simultaneously educational, entertaining, and uplifting,” said Dennis Moench, SPAC’s Senior Director of Education.
The SPAC Learning Library can be accessed at spaclearninglibrary.org and is part of the Center’s new “Creative Connection” online campaign. SPAC believes in the transformative power of art and beauty to restore and enrich the human spirit. Creative Connection and the Learning Library were launched as part of SPAC’s expanded mission to provide online resources, community groups, and educational content to inspire and create a sense of community and hope.