Painter Eric Samuel Timm demonstrates for WMMS his artwork Friday morning. (Submitted photo)
Painter Eric Samuel Timm demonstrates for WMMS his artwork Friday morning. (Submitted photo)

Fine art inundated Watertown-Mayer’s high school and middle school last Thursday and Friday as students watched and participated in music, dance, improvisation and speech.

The WMHS student performance Thursday night provided a full 360 degree view of the versatility fine arts have to offer. From xylophone solos and vocal duets, to creative expressions and mock trials, the performers showcased their beautiful and unique talents within the realm of fine art.

“The point of the evening is to showcase the amazing students at WMHS and show an appreciation for the arts,” said WMHS Speech Coach Amy Mandt. “I love being able to get a snap shot of each activity – it was a really fun night.”

Speech, along with other forms of expression like mock trials, can sometimes fly under the radar as far as being considered fine art. Fine Arts Night presents the opportunity for not only music or visual arts to be showcased, but other forms to be recognized as well. WMHS is giving students the opportunity to express their talent – even if it’s not receiving the attention it deserves.

“Fine Arts Night is an event that we have been doing for four years,” said Mandt. “We just cannot seem to get a crowd here.”

But those not in attendance missed the opportunity to see students shine under the bright lights of the Performance Arts Center. They missed performances like Jamie McDonald’s original creative expression of the loss of her sister from suicide. They missed the heavenly sounding harmony of Kathryn Jorgenson and Meagan Campbell’s duet of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Requiem. But most importantly, they missed the night that brought WMHS students together to express true feeling, conveyed through natural talent.

The creativity continued Friday as Watertown-Mayer Middle School spent the whole day immersed in art. Friday’s schedule consisted of different presenters sharing their crafts and encouraging students to locate their creative passion.

With colorful flowers constructed of duct tape illuminating the school’s outside, WMMS students gathered inside to the theater to be inspired by more inspirational speech and art.

Students were dazzled by motivational speaker and painter Eric Samuel Timm, whose presentation centered on character building. Next, the students were exposed to an assortment of more intimate presentations such as sculptures and photographs and encaustic paintings.

The Mu Daiko Drummers exhibited the beautiful and heart-pounding ancient Japanese art of taiko, and Stevie Ray’s Improv Company entertained the student body with their quick wit and sense of humor. Some performances resonated more than others. Retired WMMS English teacher Doug Voerding shared his craft of journalism, while Pat and Joe McDonald, who both grew up in the area, presented their art for the students.

“Each of the performers gave the audience a terrific example of how to use their talents and passions to create phenomenal pieces of art,” said middle school teacher Karen Veches. “They also allowed students to experience different artistic disciplines, many artists discussed their personal history of how they came to be successful in their crafts.”

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