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High school student artists take center stage
Pierre Frantz sophomore LCHS
Pierre Frantz, sophomore at Liberty County High School, shows a young student how to use the pottery wheel. Community members were able to get their hands dirty and make their own ceramics at the Speak: Voices of the Arts night, hosted by LCHS. - photo by Tiffany King

There are a lot of artistic students in Liberty County, and their work was on display during Liberty County High School’s and Bradwell Institute’s arts nights.

Bradwell hosted Night of the Arts and Acts April 28 at the Performing Arts Center.

There was singing, dancing, drama, comedy, poetry, lip syncing, rap and magic.

BI math teacher Ken Scharnagl, the night’s emcee, had the audience generate an indoor storm using their hands and feet.

Students performed songs from musicals, lip synced and danced to Ike and John Fogerty’s “Proud Mary (Rolling on the River),” played the piano and performed magic. Members of the drama club also did a dramatic presentation from “Gone with the Wind.”

Cody Wilson, drama paraprofessional, said students worked hard putting the show together.

“I’ve always had a strong belief that the arts should be unified, because I went to a high school that was so focused on sports and I feel like the kids really need art,” Wilson said. “I really wanted to bring them all together and really show the public what these kids can really do.”

The arts changed Wilson’s life in high school.

“I was very introverted and when I joined my high school drama club it made me into a whole new person,” he said. “I feel like when a kid can express themselves, it changes everything and these kids deserve that.”

LCHS hosted Speak: Voices of the Arts at the Performing Arts Center, April 23.

The night featured poetry, a dramatic interpretation, a painting party and ceramics happening simultaneously.

Jon Lattimore, of WORD INC., in Savannah emceed the student poetry performed in the main auditorium.

Lattimore encouraged students to pursue their passions and recited his own poetry.

The LCHS Drama Club performed scenes from a musical “Into the Woods,” which was presented at LCHS cafeteria May 5-6.

Artwork on loan, created by Paul Spence, Mia Boyle, Courtney England and Judi Mills, was the backdrop for the on-stage performances. The art was available for purchase with 25 percent of the proceeds going to LCHS’s Relay for Life fund.

LCHS English teacher Twonzetta Samuel, who was in charge of the event, also recited poetry dedicated to her mother and aunt.

Elsewhere, A Splash of Paint Studio hosted an easel painting party, student artwork was displayed in the gallery and attendees got their hands dirty while making their own ceramics on a pottery wheel.

LCHS art teacher Brenton Hobby, who teaches ceramics and sculpture, and his students helped people mold their own creations on the pottery wheel.

“I love showing students’ work,” Hobby said. “It gives them pride to see other people’s reactions to their work. Doing the pottery helps give the younger ones an idea of what they can do in high school and students can graduate learning a trade.”

Samuel said she enjoys creating opportunities for students to display their talents.

“It was really a night about community and bringing students together on behalf of Liberty County High School,” she said. “I think the arts are a necessity to reach kids, especially struggling learners and kids trying to find their spot.”

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