BY JACQUI RENWICK
H. J. Cody Fine Arts Department is hosting its sixth annual Art & Soul benefit, Sunday, June 8 beginning at 1:30 p.m.
The afternoon will include a benefit concert, art show, and silent auction to support the development of young artists in our community.
We aim to give the students opportunities to grow personally through exploration of, and participation in, the arts. Our hope is to enhance our programs by updating facilities, travel, programming and giving opportunities to kids they may not otherwise be able to afford them.
Last year, with help of the generous Sylvan Lake community, we raised just over $4,000. This helped us purchase art equipment and display boards, give away $1,500 in scholarships for the fine arts and send several students to summer arts camps. We are now gearing up for a possible trip back to New York City in 2015.
This year’s concert will feature musicians Donny Smith and Carmen Winter. Donny Smith began as a jazz drummer/percussionist. After 10 years of leading a rock band on various cruise ships, he settled in Central Alberta where he’s been entertaining for over three years with his unique style of combining acoustic guitar, vocals and drums in a solo show.
Carmen Winter has been playing guitar for 10 years, training privately with local music legend Ian Stewart. Her intricate fingerstyle playing lends itself well to her folk and singer/songwriter style music. With encouragement from Donny, she started performing her music live in early 2012.
Together they have created a unique fusion of folk, classic rock and blues to showcase their combined talents in playing guitar, percussion, singing and harmonizing.
Unable to stay away again this year is master guitarist and vocalist Shawn Kingston. Shawn has been a crowd pleaser at Art & Soul with his guitar prowess and sense of humour.
Also sitting in is Airdrie singer/songwriter Rick Simon. Rick’s genuine awe of music and passion for writing keeps him a very busy musician. Both Shawn and Rick have youngsters of their own and truly value the spirit of the Art & Soul day to promote arts for kids!
The art show highlights the best works from H. J. Cody art students. Pieces from Grade 9-12 artists in several different mediums will be included – some are even for sale in the auction! Bruce Thompson, art teacher at H. J. Cody, has been collecting work since the beginning of the year to showcase at Art & Soul.
Tickets are $15 and available at the school’s main office.
If you would like to help by sponsoring part of the afternoon or have an item for the silent auction, please contact Jacqui Renwick at 403-887-2412.