The Performing Arts Center and Poly Arts for Youth are offering free virtual field trips to all San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara County K-12 students.
Thousands of students attend live performances each year, according to a press release. With the current circumstances of COVID-19, offering matinees virtually will provide the opportunity for students to remain connected.
These matinees will be a combination of performances and interactive workshops. They will be pre-recorded, allowing schools to work them into their own schedules.
“We are thrilled to be reconnecting with schools,” Outreach Program Manager Andrea Castillo wrote in the press release. “The virtual student matinees feature many beloved artists that have joined us onstage for student matinees in the past.”
The virtual field trips are free to students due to the support of the Harold J. Miossi Charitable Trust and Foundation for the Performing Arts Center partners. The Harold J. Miossi Trust has supported the PAC for the past five years and has allowed them to continue being a source of arts education, said the press release.
The first virtual School Matinee Program will be held by Grammy Award winning Mexican singer-songwriter Sonia de Los Santos. She has previously performed for the PAC and is known for her “joyful community music making and cultural bridge building with her young audience members,” according to the press release. Her performance is sponsored by Bank of America, who has also been a long-time supporter of the School Matinee Program. It will run from Monday, Oct. 26 to Friday, Nov. 20, according to Marketing and Communications Manager Kristen Teufel.
The series is also planned to feature Dan Zanes, Black Violin, Doktor Kaboom and Kattam and his Tam Tams.
Almost 3,000 students have registered to participate in the virtual 2020-21 School Matinee Program season. Teufel said they hope to match actual attendance numbers from years prior, such as the 12,000 students that attended last year.
Schools already registered include Lucia Mar School District, San Luis Coastal School District and several homeschools. Registration is currently open for the first five field trips running from October to March, and additional field trips may be announced in the spring.
“We’ve been receiving a lot of positive feedback from teachers who really appreciate having the opportunity to incorporate arts education into distance learning curriculums free of cost,” said Teufel.