Opera Opportunity For MPA Students

students make set pieces for the consulIn part because a crew of MPA Upper School students have been creating set pieces for an opera titled “The Consul,” the Arbeit Opera Theatre is extending an exclusive invitation to the MPA community to view the final dress rehearsal.

This 1950s-based show deals with issues of immigration and human rights and is intended for audiences of 13 years or older. Parents and guardians are welcome to attend as well!

Please fill out the Arbeit Opera Theatre’s form to attend. There is no charge to attend the dress rehearsal, but sign-up is required.

Tickets for the live performance on November 29-30 at The Wellstone Center Theater are also available here!


Join Us On Saturday For MPA Talks

Purchase your tickets for MPA Talks to join us on Saturday as four members of our community share their meaningful, impactful, and inspiring stories! MPA Talks is a tradition that brings our community together, and we can’t wait to share the evening with you. Below is just a glimpse of the stories you’ll be inspired by on Saturday evening and tickets are still available!

Laurel Schwartz ’11 will be discussing stories passed down through generations, and how they tell us about the past and also shape the future. As human beings we are predisposed to sharing our life and our histories with others. For so long, the narratives in the news, in books and on the big screen have highlighted a single story that often left many people and identities in the margins. Now, every person has the capacity and the platform to be a storyteller with an audience. And, with that, comes our ability to change the world.

Kelly Turpin ’04’s talk will be covering her journey as an opera singer to artistic activist, which is how Arbeit Opera Theatre came to be. She has always wanted to make a difference, be at the forefront of change and societal progress, but only recently discovered how she could do that with her background in opera.

For years, MPA senior Julia Portis saw Breakthrough’s offices she passed them in the hallway; however, before her junior year she did not know what the program entailed. Upon learning about Breakthrough’s mission and curriculum, she excitedly applied to be a teaching fellow. The 9-week program brought several things to her attention: there are serious flaws in the educational system, and Minnesota suffers from one of the highest opportunity gaps in America. She believes it is imperative that we bring attention to this issue and start a conversation.

MPA Senior Gabby Law is going to talk about education–if education is the “key to success in life,” why is the system failing so many people? As a teaching fellow for Breakthrough Twin Cities, Gabby saw the incredible students in our community that the education system is leaving behind. Through her experience, Gabby will explain how we can make school a place for everyone and show just how powerful and joyful learning is for those who need it the most.

The ticket price of $20 includes passed hors d’oeuvres, dinner, and the presentations. Tickets are limited to 50. Visit mpa.link/mpatalks for more details on each speaker and to purchase tickets.


Meet The Cast And Crew Of “Walk Two Moons”

Walk Two Moons posterThe cast and crew of “Walk Two Moons” are so excited to perform next week! The show premieres in the Black Box Theatre on Friday, November 16 at 7 PM, Saturday, November 17 at 2 PM, and Sunday, November 18 at 2 PM. Purchase your tickets here!

“Walk Two Moons” is lovingly adapted for the stage with the same nuance and surprises offered by the original book. Utilizing multiple narrative frames, the play leaps back and forth through time and memory as 13-year-old Sal tells the story of the disappearance of her best friend Phoebe’s mother. Determined to find her, the two girls begin seeing murderous plots and schemes around every corner. Sal shares these conspiracy theories with her Gram and Gramps during a cross-country road trip to confront her own mother, who left her and her father a year ago. But it is only through telling Phoebe’s story that Sal truly understands why her mother left and whether or not they’ll ever be together again. Read More


Middle School Play: “Walk Two Moons”

Walk Two Moons posterTickets for the Middle School play, “Walk Two Moons,” go on sale tomorrow, November 2, 2018! Purchase your tickets here!

“Walk Two Moons” is lovingly adapted for the stage with the same nuance and surprises offered by the original book. Utilizing multiple narrative frames, the play leaps back and forth through time and memory as 13-year-old Sal tells the story of the disappearance of her best friend Phoebe’s mother. Determined to find her, the two girls begin seeing murderous plots and schemes around every corner. Sal shares these conspiracy theories with her Gram and Gramps during a cross-country road trip to confront her own mother, who left her and her father a year ago. But it is only through telling Phoebe’s story that Sal truly understands why her mother left and whether or not they’ll ever be together again.

This show is most appropriate for Middle School or older students due to the dramatic story line. The shows will be Friday, November 16 at 7 PM, Saturday, November 17 at 2 PM, and Sunday, November 18 at 2 PM.

 


MPA Student Artwork In Invitational Exhibition

MPA is proud to share that the following students’ artwork has been juried into the 14th Annual Shattuck-St. Mary’s Invitational! The exhibition opens Thursday, October 25 and runs until November 12. Local Faribault artist, Jessica Prill, owner of Fleur De Lis Gallery, was this year’s juror. Each school invited was allowed to enter only 10 pieces. Congratulations to the artists!

Junior Elli Carlson received third place for her ceramics piece, titled “Seventeen.”
Senior Mats Dahlberg received fourth place for his painting, “Moonlight Moths.”
Senior Olivia Burton showcased her colored pencil piece, titled “Self-Portrait.”
Senior Dylan Dickenson showcased ceramics, his work titled “Teapot.”
Freshman Amelia Dickson showcased a cut-paper collage, titled “Fleurs.”
Sophomore Colin Simonson showcased photography,  “Yellow Flower.”


MPA Alumni In The News

Amber Washington '12Four MPA alumni were featured in the news this week for a variety of accomplishments! From athletics to community engagement, and arts to cooking, we are so proud of these individuals for representing MPA!

This past Saturday, MPA alum Amber Washington ’12 won the International Tennis Federation’s Sharm El Sheikh Pro Circuit Doubles Championship alongside her partner Chelsea Vanhoutte of Belgium. At MPA, Amber set a state record for most tennis championships in a career with four in doubles and two in singles. She competed collegiately at the University of Pittsburgh.

Liberty SchoolChristian Holmen ’90, Teaching Head of School at Liberty School, speaks on how Liberty is shaping the way students who are dyslexic, gifted, or both, are taught. “The first goal for the teachers and administrators at Liberty is to break down the social and emotional barriers that many of the kids have because of similar experiences,” he said. Read the full article here!

Andrea Goldberg '09Andrea Goldberg ’09 was one of the artists that contributed to the 5,000 carved Halloween pumpkins light up the Minnesota Zoo! Andrea was heavily involved in the arts at MPA, having work selected for the Best 100 Art Exhibition and the Tri-Metro Conference Art Exhibition while in high school. She graduated from MCAD and is now a professional artist. Read the full article here!

matt bander '11Matt Bander ‘11 was in the Mississippi Market’s magazine, “The Medley.” Matt is the Market’s Meat and Seafood manager and is featured on page 5 of the Fall 2018 edition in an interview called “Get To Know Your Co-Op family!” Matt is also currently back at MPA as an assistant boys’ basketball coach! Read the full article here!

From top to bottom; photo courtesy of Amber Washington; photo by Stephen Eginoire, “The Durango Telegraph”; photo by Jeff Wheeler, “The Star Tribune”; photo by “The Medley” magazine.


Your Gifts Make Elective Opportunities Possible

Upper School classThis article is the second in a series called “The Fall Campaign Stories of Impact: Five Weeks, Five Stories, Five Reasons to Give.”

MPA’s Upper School curriculum features a breadth and depth of challenging topics, from Modern United States History and Computer Science, to Literary Analysis and Advanced Argumentation. Can you find the electives in this list? It’s probably not obvious, and that’s by design. At MPA, all courses, both core and elective, are developed around specific academic requirements and developmental goals. Electives play a special role in the mix, reinforcing an interdisciplinary approach to learning that supports the whole student.

“Core and elective classes at MPA have distinct roles, and also have equal billing,” explains Mark Segal, Upper School director. “What’s learned in electives carries over to other courses. For example, the critical thinking and persuasion skills acquired through our elective course in debate translate into the public speaking component of our English courses, and the analytical approach needed in our science program.” Read More


The Purpose of Mounds Park Academy

by Dr. Bill Hudson, Head of School

“Do you know the purpose of Mounds Park Academy?” asked Mr. Kevin Breen, chair of our ISACS accreditation visiting team, of several seniors.

“The purpose of the school is to develop the whole child so that we can be fully formed adults,” said the first.

“And when we are more fully formed, we have the self-confidence to respect each other and value inclusivity,” added a friend.

“Yes, so in a way, the most important word in the motto is ‘do,’ as in do things; do right,” said the third. And then, after a pause, he added this: “And our teachers facilitate that. They make it easy to do right. They make volunteerism easy. They make civic engagement easy. They bring opportunities to ‘do right’ right to us.”

The vibrant and powerful mission of Mounds Park Academy, delivered by talented and caring teachers, is having a tremendous impact on the lives of our students each day. You share in that impact by the value you place on learning, the investment you are making in the education of your children, and your commitment to and support of Mounds Park Academy.

Monday will mark the beginning of our fall campaign, “Joyful Learning, Joyful Giving.” For the next five weeks, the MPA community will band together to raise the funds necessary to extend the impact and joy of an MPA education. Culminating with Give To The Max Day and the Faculty and Staff Lip Sync Assembly on November 15, our goal is to raise $300,000 to ensure joyful learning continues at MPA.

One could say that the joy of learning at MPA is dependent upon the joyful giving of parents, alumni, grandparents, friends, and alumni families. Mounds Park Academy, like all independent schools, relies on three principle sources of revenue to support its day-to-day operations: tuition, endowment, and annual gifts made by members of our community. Tuition does not cover the total cost of educating a student at Mounds Park Academy and the gap is bridged by annual giving.

Gifts made to the MPA fund during the “Joyful Learning, Joyful Giving” campaign are used exclusively to fund joyful learning:

  • Joy from throwing a pot in ceramics class.
  • Joy from singing the national anthem so beautifully at Homecoming events.
  • Joy from creating a squishy circuit that powers a light bulb in the Makerspace.
  • Joy from hard work, training, and teamwork that results in a soccer victory.
  • Joy from bringing to live a character on stage.
  • Joy from grasping the nuance of a novel, an aha moment.

The spirit of philanthropy and of joyful giving at Mounds Park Academy is vibrant. I humbly ask you to join me in increasing the impact of the MPA mission. Please know that every gift is valued and participation at whatever level feels right to your family is appreciated. You may also be interested in knowing that 100 percent of faculty and staff gave to the MPA Fund last year and I expect it will be the same again this year. We have the most caring, knowledgeable, talented teachers and staff who make joyful learning and joyful giving possible.

Look for more information in the mail, visit the MPA website, or contact the Development Office to make a gift. With your contribution, you make an impact in the lives of all those who learn, play, create, dream, and do at our school. Your gift directly impacts of the mission of MPA and the lives of our students.


Madrigal Singers Collaboration

madrigal singers practicingThe MPA Madrigal Singers are honored to be collaborating with professional musicians and singing in the beautiful House of Hope! MPA students have been practicing with the Oratory’s professional singers and conductor to prepare for the performance on October 14. See photos of their collaborative practice on campus here!

To join us for the live performance, tickets can be purchased here, with the code MoundsParkAcademy for 20 percent off advanced tickets! Tickets for siblings of students are $5 each. Thanks for supporting our talented student voices!


Meet MPA Talks Speaker Laurel Schwartz ’11

laurel Schwartz at a film festival for her documentaryLaurel Schwartz ’11 is currently a multimedia producer and social advocacy student at Columbia University. “Or, [I’m] a social scientist with a track record for getting things done,” she says.

After graduating from Mounds Park Academy, Laurel attended Scripps College, where she studied American studies and media studies. She has spent the last several years work at advertising agencies and PR firms creating media both for fortune 500 brands and for social advocacy causes. Additionally, her self-produced documentary about chronic illness appeared in several film festivals last spring.

We asked Laurel several questions so that you could get to know her better prior to MPA Talks!

What do you believe will be the greatest challenge our current students will face in their lifetimes and how do you see MPA equipping them to face that challenge? 

When I graduated from high school, I knew two things: first, that I was passionate about history and social change, and, second, that creativity made me tick. What I didn’t know was that one day, there would be a job that would allow me to use my creativity to make a difference in the world. MPA is so remarkable because it is an institution that truly allows each student to find what uniquely gets them fired up in the morning and helps students imagine opportunities, solutions, and even jobs that don’t exist yet. MPA equips students to follow their curiosity for the world. Read More