A Virtual Arts Event: From Conception to Realization
Although I started community theatre at a very young age, it wasn’t until high school that I really became involved in the arts. But it became clear as the years progressed that this was something I was passionate about, so after serving two years on the general arts council and knowing that we were in for a crazy year at school, I knew I had to push for an arts event, in any shape or form
Which brings us to Step One: The Conception. I had been brainstorming what an arts event would look like in a pandemic even before the school year had begun, and had settled on a completely virtual option, a YouTube premiere. A video that would be completely finished and edited together, but aired as a live event, this way we likely wouldn’t need to deal with any last minute technical issues but still got to keep the idea of the performances being “live” (even though they would be pre-recorded).
Step Two: The Plan. I submitted my application to become a Student Council member and had mentioned my desire for a virtual arts event in the form. Once the council got started, I waited a few weeks to bring up the idea as we focused on other things, in mid-November I saw my chance and eventually we settled on having the event the last day before the winter break, in cohesion with our Winter/Holiday Spirit Week.
I had my own little team to work with to make my dream a reality, and I could not be more grateful for all the hard work they put in. Our first step was to finalize the date and time of the event, initially December 18th at 2:00pm, and to collect submissions. We established that any art piece of under five minutes would be welcome, anything from pictures of sculptures and paintings, to songs and dances, to short films and photography, to comedy and poetry were encouraged to be emailed in by Friday, December 11th. And in the end we got 6 video submissions, and numerous visual art pieces.
Step Three: The Publicity. Now that we had an idea, we had to get the word out to make it happen. To publicize the need for submissions we had the grade representatives reach out to their grade, trying to nudge their peers towards showing off their creative and artistic talents. We also had one of our heads of publicity, Andrey, make a post for the student council instagram, and we wrote up an announcement as well. Once we got all the submissions in we made another post about the event on the @eomstudco instagram page and a brief announcement went out the day before, Thursday, December 17th.
Step Four: Near Completion. The week of, we were in the final legs of preparation. During the student council meeting that Tuesday, December 15th one of our co-presidents, Claire, mentioned that some teachers wanted to show the video in class Friday morning so instead of the original plan to air it live at 2:00pm, we decided to simply upload it as a normal video for 8:00am. My team and I also settled on an order for the acts, doing our best to intersperse different styles and art forms to keep the video engaging. We then assigned student council members to emcee each act and had them submit their videos for Wednesday, December 16th so that Andrey would have time to put it all together Thursday before it went out to the public on the 18th.
Step Five: The Event. I watched the event the afternoon of the 18th and it was
more than I ever could have hoped for. It ended up being just over half an hour and I am incredibly proud of everyone who partook in creating a lasting mark on Earl of March’s artistic history. All the acts were incredible and Andrey did so much more with the editing than I expected of him. It was wonderful to see everyone’s hard work pay off. As of right now the video has almost 250 views. If you or anyone you know is trying to plan an event like this I wish you the best of luck, and that this article can help to serve as a basis guide for your future endeavours to come. Happy Holidays!
To watch the EOM Holiday Coffeehouse please visit: