Current 8th and 9th grade students with a passion for the arts are invited to attend an upcoming virtual information session about the School of the Arts @ Central Gwinnett High School (SOTA), opening in August of 2021 for rising 9th and 10th graders. Sessions will be held Sept. 24, Sept. 26, Oct. 17, and Oct. 24.
SOTA will offer a unique “arts-centric” learning experience for Gwinnett County high school students, boasting the most fine arts courses in the district. Centrally located in Lawrenceville, this “school within a school” is designed for students who want to take their art to the next level, working with industry professionals and partnering with semi-professional, professional, and postsecondary arts organizations and programs for opportunities that students will not find anywhere else.
SOTA’s faculty will be made up of creative industry professionals. Both full-time educators and adjunct fine arts experts will lead seminars and other innovative instructional approaches to help build performance, business, technology, and communication skills needed for industry success.
The arts school will combine required academic coursework with expanded fine arts classes and arts-related internships and work experiences at a pre-professional and professional level. Unique features include an audition-required Conservatory Program as well as a Fellows Program with focused elective courses in the arts.
Housed in a new 31,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art facility, SOTA will have a black box theatre for flexible staging and small-audience performances; visual arts classrooms and computer art lab; expanded band, orchestra, chorus, music technology, and recording studio facilities; dance studio space; unique and specialized private lesson and studio space; and expanded performance, rehearsal, and storage spaces.
The virtual information sessions are open to students from all GCPS middle and high schools. Both the SOTA Conservatory Program and the SOTA Fellows Program will accept students on permissive transfer.
- Thursday, Sept. 24, 2020, 6:30 p.m.
- Saturday, Sept. 26, 2020, 2:30 p.m.
- Saturday, Oct. 17, 2020, Noon
- Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020, Noon
Pre-audition workshops will prepare students for what to expect when they audition for the Conservatory. Participants can get feedback on their audition piece or portfolio and get answers to their questions. Workshops will be available in both a virtual and an in-person format, with in-person workshops to be held at Central Gwinnett.
- Saturday, Oct. 17, 2020, 8–10 a.m.
- Saturday, Oct. 17, 2020, 1–3 p.m.
- Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020, 8–10 a.m.
- Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020, 1–3 p.m.
In-person auditions— portfolio presentations for visual arts— are required for students interested in the Conservatory. Auditions for theatre will be held at Aurora Theatre and auditions/presentations for all other disciplines will be held at Central Gwinnett High School, scheduled between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. on designated days. Participants will observe social distancing and masks are required.
- Saturday, Nov. 7, 2020
- Saturday, Nov. 14, 2020
On the SOTA website (gcpsk12.org/SOTA), learn more about information sessions, register for a workshop, check out audition requirements, find a Conservatory application, and more. Central Gwinnett students and students from other GCPS schools may apply for the Conservatory Program (audition/portfolio required) and the Fellows Program (no admissions criteria). Transfer students must provide their own transportation.
About the SOTA Conservatory Program
Conservatory students will spend much of their school day in expanded arts classes, internships, and work experiences in the arts, completing online and blended courses for academic coursework. Areas of concentration at SOTA will include Art and Design, Dance, Music Technology and Audio Production, Theatre, and Voice. Admittance to the Conservatory will be determined through auditions, interviews, and juried presentations and performances.
About the SOTA Fellows Program
The Fellows program at SOTA will provide Central Gwinnett and transfer students with expanded elective course opportunities in creative writing, music (percussion, strings, and winds), and theatre. Fellows will spend a majority of their day in core academic classes while focusing their elective course work in the arts. Students may take online and blended courses to allow for additional fine arts classes. While there is no admission criteria for the Fellows program, this experience is designed for students with a strong interest in the arts.
Learn more about the School of the Arts @ Central Gwinnett High School on the SOTA website at gcpsk12.org/SOTA.