More than 100 middle-school students in Orange County, California are participating in the Pacific Symphony’s arts-X-press summer program, in which they study theater, visual art, vocal music, and instrumental music. The multidisciplinary program is in its fourteenth year and was founded by Music Director Carl St.Clair. Students are nominated by their teachers to apply for the program. Fifty students enroll in one-week sessions between July 12 and 30, living in dormitories at Vanguard University in Costa Mesa and attending performances, participating in workshops led by arts educators, and meeting artists behind the scenes. Among this year’s activities are trips to Laguna Beach’s Pageant of the Masters and Festival of the Arts; performances of musicals In the Heights and Beauty and the Beast; and the Pacific Symphony’s “Gershwin Greats” program at Verizon Wireless Amphitheater and Symphony in the Cities in Mission Viejo. A blog from this summer’s program is posted at

Posted July 16, 2014