Art programs that help shape the future of students

Last Updated by Martha Jasso on

Walking into the band hall of Marshall High School you’ll hear a soft melody resonate inside the classroom of orchestra director, John Thornton. Inside, you’ll find his students intently fine-tuning their instruments, patiently waiting for his start signal. Looking around, they look like ordinary teens passionate about music, but these young students don’t just practice the craft -- they live it.

In this episode of ARTS, we learn how a collaborative program with the San Antonio Symphony is giving students a taste of what a professional career in music entails. We then visit Alpha Home, an organization dedicated to helping recovering individuals through art therapy.

Orchestra students at Marshal High School spend hours honing their skills with the help of mentors from the San Antonio Symphony (SAS). Working alongside professional musicians allows them to get a better understanding of the music industry. What’s unique about the program is that students never leave campus. SAS members work with the students at Marshall.

“We have at least a dozen dates this year where musicians from the Symphony are going to come over and work with students,” said Thornton.

The convenience and flexibility of the program makes it a favorite among the students. The opportunity to learn from some of San Antonio’s best gives them the confidence needed to possibly pursue a musical career.

Students love to learn, and just as with any art concentration is necessary. For recovering individuals at Alpha Home, it’s precisely the calming effect of art that helps them focus and learn the discipline needed to overcome addictions. Members are currently working on art for their next exhibit, "Inside Out," which has a theme of self-portraits. The pieces range from light, colorful portraits to dark storylines based on each student’s view of themself and their addictions. 

“I think these art groups are real blessings for the ladies,” said Angela White, Chief Executive Officer of Alpha home. "Inside Out" is scheduled to exhibit on Thursday, Sept. 22 at Brick at Blue Star from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m and is open to the public. The one-night-only event will celebrate Alpha Home’s 50th Anniversary and National Recovery Month.

Watch this fascinating episode of ARTS airing Thursday, Sept. 15 at 8 p.m. on KLRN.

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