Cockeysville Middle adapts to coronavirus pandemic with online gala
By Melissa Whatley
Baltimore Sun Media|
Feb 16, 2021 at 5:30 AM
The arts are alive and well at Cockeysville Middle School even if the students are not in the building right now.
Months of hard work and dedication were on display Jan. 22 when the school hosted its first CMS Virtual Fine Arts Winter Gala.
The combination art show and concert was described as “a little magical moment” by Principal Adam Carney and showcased artwork and musical performances from more than 600 students in grades 6 through 8. It was developed in hopes of making this year feel a little more like school and to give the students as good a virtual experience as possible under the circumstances.
The event was an hourlong, jam-packed show put together by the amazing fine arts staff at the school, including Marian Garven, orchestra; James Carlson, band; Vincent Sandroni, chorus, and art teachers Sam Georgieff, Brendan Coleman and Anne Scott.
As students displayed themselves singing, playing instruments and submitting artwork, the teachers compiled hundreds of performances and pieces of art into one virtual extravaganza.
The gala was a wonderful mix of artwork with themes like comfort, connection, creativity, along with reflections on the pandemic. It featured more than 150 pieces, in a mixture of media, and provided a look at the lives of middle school students — their identities, their experiences and, definitely, social distancing.
The artwork ranged from juried art pieces to some whimsical works as an ode to the art classroom cactus, Mr. Bob. According to Sam Georgieff, the gala “showed that great art can still be created, even during a pandemic.”
The concert featured performances from the band, orchestra and chorus, in each grade level, bringing together on-screen, individually recorded students.
From kitchens, bathrooms, hallways and living rooms, these impressive young musicians showcased their talents and hard work in pieces ranging from the can-can to Beethoven!
Even more impressive, all of the sixth-graders were playing together for the first time without ever being in the same space or even meeting their teacher.
Fittingly, the last piece of the evening was a combined effort among all three select music groups, Voices of Cockeysville, Winds of Cockeysville, and Strings of Cockeysville, performing “The Show Must Go On” by Queen. With more than 75 musicians joining together on the screen, the finale was a magical moment, indeed.
Several student artists at Cockeysville Middle also have been busy with a service project as part of the National Junior Art Honor Society. Under the direction of adviser Brendan Coleman, the students have put together a fun 2020 virtual learning “I Was There” T-shirt and are selling it to benefit the Student Support Network.
The Student Support Network provides CMS families with food, toiletries, school supplies, diapers and more. T-shirts are $20 each and can be purchased for a limited time at https://cockeysvillems.bcps.org.