Quincy Art Center partners with Quincy Community Theatre for ‘Disney’s Moana Jr.’ project

mask making 2

From left, Emma Eyler, Lana Almashharawi and Addison Zanger pose for a photo while creating masks for Quincy Community Theatre's production of 'Disney's Moana Jr.'. The students are participating in the Art Center's Arts Leadership Academy, and this project counts toward their volunteer hours for the academy. | Photo courtesy of Quincy Art Center

QUINCY — Anyone who attends Quincy Community Theatre’s production of “Disney’s Moana Jr.” this month will see artwork created by Quincy Art Center volunteers.

High school students in the Art Center’s Arts Leadership Academy program constructed and painted large masks to be used in the play. The project took a week to complete. The Art Center and QCT have a rich history of working together on several initiatives, and this was a special way to kick off a new year of working together.

“2023 is a big year for Quincy arts, with both QCT and the Art Center celebrating 100-year anniversaries,” Brendan Shea, head of education and student theater director at QCT, said in a press release. “Our two organizations have a history of brilliant collaborations. It seemed only natural to continue this tradition by pairing the amazing Arts Leadership Academy students with ‘Moana Jr.’

“The artists are not only learning to fulfill a creative brief by making unique props but also contributing an essential storytelling tool to the production.”

“It’s so important for the students who are taking part in the Art Center’s Arts Leadership Academy to understand the power of collaboration, especially within the arts. This project perfectly demonstrates how visual art and theatre come together to tell one story. I’m so grateful for the ongoing collaborative efforts the Art Center and Quincy Community Theatre have and can’t wait to see all the amazing things the two organizations will do in the future,” said Kelsey Deters, director of engagement and marketing at the Art Center.

The Arts Leadership Academy gives high school students the opportunity to experience the nonprofit world in a new way and prepare them for involvement in their community. Students in the program will have conversations with community leaders, learn a new artistic skill and teach that skill to younger students, and gain the fundamental building blocks for philanthropy and volunteerism. They are fundraising for the Art Center’s stART program, a program that provides visual art education to children in kindergarten through third grade in Quincy public and parochial schools, and schools in rural Adams, Brown, and Pike counties. Fifteen students are in the Academy.

Tickets for “Disney’s Moana Jr.” can be purchased at 1qct.org. For more information about the Arts Leadership Academy and other Art Center programs, visit quincyartcenter.org.

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