A push to promote art, culture among students

Xu Wei
Art education has been gaining more attention in the city with a variety of new platforms and programs launched to promote art and cultivate taste among students.
Xu Wei

Art education has been gaining more attention in the city with a variety of new platforms and programs launched to promote art and cultivate taste among students.

In late May, the Nine Trees Future Art Center set up its art education platform in collaboration with the city’s music, theater and dance institutions, including the Wang Peiyu Studio, Pearl Studio, Yuewu Art Training Center and Chaoyang Art School.

Based on the young audience’s needs, the platform offers various program categories, such as theater and instrument courses, art lectures, as well as animation and recording camps.

Peking Opera artist Wang Peiyu, known for her deep and charming voice in depicting the theater’s laosheng (old male) role, has designed a systematic Peking Opera curriculum for children ages 3 to 10. 

Different from traditional Peking Opera training, the curriculum puts more focus on the children’s interests.

Covering traditional vocal exercises, dance, percussion and piano, the curriculum’s flexibility is well suited for kids from different backgrounds, and educators are encouraged to use families and local communities to foster learning.

Selected interests are then developed through projects or investigations — involving related fun, interesting, hands-on learning. Children even have opportunities to perform on the international stage.

Meanwhile, a series of art lectures and workshops will be hosted by the center for those who want to get closer to performing arts. 

Professor Tao Xin from the Shanghai Conservatory of Music will lecture about the charm and development of musicals.

The center is also planning to cooperate with Pearl Studio to organize animation and recording camps for children during school holidays, where they will learn about the entire animation production process and talk with veteran animators from home and abroad. 

The recording camp aims to inspire kids to capture and embrace the breadth of nature, embarking on an immersive journey of sound in which their connection to nature is expected to grow.

Sending his best wishes for the center, renowned conductor Cao Peng, 95, hopes the new collaborative mode among the Nine Trees Future Art Center and local art institutions will make culture and art more accessible to a wide audience.

Since its opening last year, the center has been dedicated to staging outstanding performances, as well as educating future generations of theater professionals. Students from Fudan University’s theater club have been active at the center incubating and creating original plays.

A push to promote art, culture among students
Ti Gong

A group photo of the participants when the Nine Trees Future Art Center launched its art education platform in late May. 

The Art Space for Kids is another theater group catering to performances for kids ages 2 to 12, as well as offering innovative, intensive workshops and summer camps. 

Over the past few months, the group has presented several hundred interactive art programs and short videos online. Magicians, dancers and actors have been invited to exchange their ideas and offer children online workshops and salons. 

Stories behind the production of their new plays are shared through streaming websites that engage audiences and cultivate a relationship between looking at art and creating it.

New, original stage productions are created in collaboration with artists from the UK and Australia. Among them are a modern dance interpretation of the Kunqu Opera classic “A Lone Sword Meeting,” piano monodrama “The First Piano on the Moon,” and immersive drama “From Mountain to Mountain and Sea to Sea,” adapted from the ancient Chinese book of mythic geography and legends, “The Classic of Mountains and Seas.”  

According to Forrina Chen, founder of the Art Space for Kids, art is a beam of light that brings hope to people. For a long time, they have considered hosting a children’s art festival, and this year the dream will come true.

The children’s art festival is expected to take place in October or November. Professionals will participate in forums to talk about teenagers’ art education and theater creation. 

In addition, a trade fair for theater operators and professionals, as well as a showcase of excellent plays and artistic performances from all over the world, will be hosted.

A push to promote art, culture among students
Ti Gong

Kids enjoy themselves during a field trip organized by the Art Space for Kids in Shanghai.

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