Three local students are getting a boost in their artistic endeavours in school.
The Vernon & District Performing Arts Centre Society was able to award bursaries despite its 20th annual Birthday Bash celebration placed on hold for a second straight year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The three recipients of $1,000 are Rachel Glessing of Coldstream; and Robyn Shanks and Emily Campbell, both of Vernon.
Families of each year’s recipients are traditionally invited and publicly recognized as part of pre-show ceremonies each fall at the Birthday Bash.
Glessing, a Kalamalka Secondary grad, is a fourth year student at the University of Calgary, having completed two years in a Bachelor of Music in Integrated Studies, combined with her Bachelor of Science (Biology), with two years left in her BMus degree program (trombone).
Shanks, a graduate of Clarence Fulton Secondary, is a fourth year Bachelor of Fine Arts (Acting) student at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver.
Campbell, also a Fulton grad, is a fourth year Bachelor of Fine Arts (Theatre) at the University of Victoria, with a focus in applied theatre, (as an accessible art form), technical (lighting) and directing, while completing a minor in English.
“We have a very accomplished local community of theatre, dance and music school programs and private academies here, which signals how important the performing arts are to our emerging young artists,” VDPAC executive director Jim Harding said.
“We want to continue encouraging them with our bursary program to help them explore and develop careers. Live performance will return, so we will certainly need this coming year and the continued generosity of our supporters to help re-build our bursary fund to offer that support.”
Bursaries are made possible from the generous donations by patrons, tips collected at the coat check and the bar and concession; as well as specified, tax deductible donations and memorial gifts by donors and sponsors made throughout the year.
“This year, with the return of full public performances still delayed, we just introduced our audience cut-outs promotion as a fundraiser to help replenish our bursary program fund for 2021 and beyond,” Harding said.
Those wanting to support the program can visit Ticketseller.ca to purchase an audience cut-out for a tax deductible donation. Cut-outs will help fill those seats the society cannot fill while public health orders limit indoor events to a maximum 50 per cent capacity.