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The Ancona School is excited to announce a year-long arts partnership with Court Theater. The partnership includes programing for students, parents, families, and teachers.

The foundation of our Court partnership is a 7th and 8th Grade curricular unit on the Harlem Renaissance that focuses on African American artists working in Harlem during the 1920s and 1930s. This unit is centered around Court’s production of Pearl Clege’s play Blues for an Alabama Sky. Our 7th and 8th grade students will attend a design presentation and read-thru of the script by the cast, a technical rehearsal, and a student matinee performance. The show’s director and a scholar from University of Chicago will visit our 7th and 8th grade students at Ancona twice during the process to discuss the play. Our students will create an original piece of art or an interpretation of a piece from the period as a culminating project.

The 1st and 2nd Grade students will be studying nationwide Renaissance movements, with a special focus on Chicago, and using their studies as a theme for the African American Assembly on Friday, March 3, 2017.  Later that month, the 7th and 8th grade Performing Arts students will stage and host a Harlem Renaissance themed cabaret, “Blues for an Ancona Sky,” on Thursday, March 23, 2017. All are invited to attend!

In the Spring, students across Ancona will help to publish a booklet about the Harlem Renaissance that features art, poetry, and music from the time period along with student writing about the works. This booklet will be take-home piece for all families so they can explore the material at home.

In the coming weeks parents will receive an invitation to see Blues for an Alabama Sky at Court. This “Ancona Night Out” will feature a pre-show dinner and discussion with a member of the show’s artistic team. After the talk, everyone will head to Court to see Blues for an Alabama Sky as a community.

Special thanks for Chip Bamberger and Martha Van Haitsma for their vision and generosity that made this partnership possible.