Perhaps it is the absence of art in our lives right now that reminds us of its importance. It might be that we missed seeing our favorite artists on stage at Red Rocks this summer. Maybe, we did not get to go to Denver’s RiNo district this September to watch the artists make the walls come alive at the Crush Walls mural festival.
It is possible that we had not thought about how important art was in our lives until it was gone.
Then, I think of our artists at Colorado Academy. Making their art continues to be as important as ever. Our young artists use their time in the studio and on the stage to practice having a voice, one that is unique to them. They can experiment, labor, struggle, fail, and rise up. There is nothing easy about the creative process, and as author Glennon Doyle says about life in general, “We can do hard things.” We may not be able to gather to enjoy arts together this year, but our young artists continue to work through the beauty and the messes of making art.
Sometimes making art and music is an activity we choose to do to distract ourselves from something bringing us down. Sometimes it is a platform we use to show others how to see the world differently. Other times it is a process that calms us, like meditation. Whether being the art-maker or the art-appreciator, the process plays an immeasurable role in our lives. Art connects us to one another or points out our important differences. It is not easy, but that too can bring us joy.
Sophomore Joanna Rydberg performed in a piano recital recently. (Watch her performance here.) She memorized Beethoven’s Sonata, Op 2 No 31 in C, a piece lasting nine minutes. When asked why playing the piano is important to her, she says, “After countless hours of practice and many lessons, I have a finished work of art, and it gives me great joy to be able to share that with others.”
Junior Casey Myers explains why the arts are important to him: “I love playing the violin and acting on the stage, because they allow me to completely express myself in ways that normal communication could not, and they give me a chance to reconnect with a different world in which the only thing that exists is here and now. This notion is what’s kept me invested all these years and is also what helped me find these passions to begin with all the way back in Kindergarten, 11 years ago.”
Yes, the arts do continue to connect us all, and that is what is more important than ever.