On Wednesday, October 25, Concord Academy hosted an open showcase during club block in the Chapel. This event, formally titled Last Wednesday’s Open Showcase, is a new performing arts opportunity at CA; it acts as an open mic for students to share their talents with the broader school community. As the name implies, these showcases will occur during club block on the last Wednesday of every month, with the next event scheduled for November 29.

Last Wednesday’s Open Showcases can be a place for students to share pieces of music from their Individual Music Instruction (IMI) lessons, Music Ensembles, or Student-Led Singing Groups. Students are also encouraged to share individual creations or something they have been working on in clubs.

“Last year, one of the most common pieces of feedback [the Performing Arts department] heard from students was a request for more opportunities to perform. The open showcase is meant to provide more regular opportunities for students to share what they have been working on,” said Michael Bennett, the head of the Performing Arts department. Bennett is involved with organizing and leading Last Wednesday’s Open Showcases.

Most students taking an IMI only get the chance to perform once or twice a year, and when they do, they often only perform one of the many pieces they learn. Playing a piece in a private lesson and performing for an audience are two very different experiences; the open showcases will allow CA students to feel the joy of sharing their hard work with others more regularly, regardless of whether they are involved in IMI, Ensemble, or another group on campus.

In the future, Last Wednesday’s Open Showcases will likely allow students to share more than their musical talents. Bennett said, “Ideally, the showcase would eventually extend to include theater, dance, or any other kind of performance students are working on throughout the year […] Since this is the first time we are piloting the program, we will see if it works and what tweaks might need to be made to ensure maximum participation and turnout.”

Overall, Last Wednesday’s Open Showcases are an exciting addition to the CA community, and students cannot wait to see how they will evolve over time!