When Canterbury High School junior Khy Bowe steps onto the stage, they are no longer a student. Khy is someone completely different, like the ghost of a victim or a butler in a grandiose mansion. There’s no place they’d rather be.
Bowe, who has been a student at Canterbury School since the sixth grade, is a member of The Academy of the Arts at Canterbury School, and their area of study is theatre. “I chose theatre because it is an art that I find to be more expressive and freeing than other more traditional art forms,” they say.
The Academy of the Arts kicked off in 2021 as a unique, student-driven program that provides an intensive arts experience within an exceptional academic environment. Before auditioning, students choose an area of concentration: band, orchestra, theatre, visual art or vocal music. Bowe auditioned for the Academy because they were excited about the opportunity of being around people who were serious about art. They knew their Academy mentors and peers could help them get to a higher level. Auditions are held each spring, but students new to Canterbury may audition in the fall of their arrival. Admittance is based on an audition, portfolio review and interviews with Canterbury Fine Arts faculty.
There are a number of unique features of the Academy. From public performances and exhibits, an introduction to the arts as a business, to preparations for college auditions and interviews, the Academy is a rigorous and impressive program. Perhaps one of the toughest aspects of the Academy are peer critiques. Throughout the year, students perform for their peers and then listen to their comments and critiques. It is an important experience for both the performer and their peers offering feedback.
“The Academy of the Arts has given my peers a platform to critique my passion and polish my performances with valuable insight from the audience perspective,” Bowe says. “The Academy has also helped me realize the power of collaborating with other theatre Academy members and members of other disciplines.”
Academy students are also assigned a faculty mentor who helps them set goals and create a road map for the academic year. If requested, the faculty mentor can also set the stage for the admissions process if the student wishes to pursue arts programs at the collegiate level.
One of Bowe’s favorite things about The Academy of the Arts at Canterbury School is the appreciation they get from seeing their peers explore other art forms.
“In the Academy, you get the pleasure of seeing not only the performances, but the work that goes into them,” Bowe says. “I find that I can go to an art gallery or performance now and see past what’s on the surface.”
Address: 3210 Smith Road, Fort Wayne, Indiana 46804
Phone: (260) 436-0746