ASN 2014 National Conference in Denver: Careers, students, and a creative state

Key West, Florida (September 1, 2014)…This year, attendees of the Arts Schools Network’s Annual National Conference, October 22-25, will be inspired not only by the sight and height of the Rockies, but also by Colorado’s support of the creative arts, the 5th leading economic industry in the state.

The creative environment in Denver will be a fitting setting for conference theme: “Career Pathways in the Arts, and More!” Colorado’s Creative Industries, a division of the Colorado Office of Economic Development & International Trade, began in 2008 to foster significant and sustained investment in the creative sector where entrepreneurs and enterprises can flourish. The state is growing its own creative workforce.

William M. Kohut, Principal of Denver School of the Arts (DSA), an ASN member school and host of the conference, said, “Across the nation, we’re beginning to see a movement of arts education geared towards careers in the arts — audio engineering, visual arts, graphic arts, fashion design, film, video, and technical theater arts. It’s important that ASN members learn and talk about these programs. They can encourage their states to join this movement and help to cultivate the creative arts across the United States.”

The conference will also focus a spotlight on students. In addition to sessions on access to arts education for special needs and minority students, there will be a separate educational strand for students who will attend the event. Student showcase performances presented by participating member schools will also be a highlight of this core conference, including student performances by the ASN award-winning Electric Rock Orchestra from Idaho Arts Charter School and by a jazz combo from the New Orleans Center for Creative Arts.

The highlight of the event will be the fully staged collaborative performance of “Carmina Burana,” featuring full orchestra, chorus, soloists, and dance performed by students from Denver School of the Arts in Denver, CO; Duke Ellington School of the Arts in Washington, D.C., and Orange County School of the Arts in Santa Ana, CA. It will be conducted by Dr. Larry Livingston, Director of Orchestras, University of Southern California, Thornton School of Music in Los Angeles, CA.

“Carmina Burana” is open to the public and will be performed on Thursday, October 23 at 7:30 p.m. at the Ellie Caulkins Opera House at the Denver Center for the Performing Arts. The center is the second largest performing arts venue in the nation (after Lincoln Center in New York City.) General admission tickets for $50 are available on the DSA website, ASN members may also purchase tickets through ASN conference registration.

“We are extremely excited about the collaboration with Orange County and Duke Ellington schools and performances by other ASN schools’ students,” said Kohut. ” This is a great outreach and network opportunity for our students. They will meet people who may be future peers at colleges and conservatories. It’s important to involve students in this event; we can help create advocates for the arts.”

Kohut added, “We’re thrilled to host the conference. It’s an opportunity to not only showcase DSA, but also to introduce arts leaders throughout the nation to Colorado’s creative industries, initiatives, and venues.”

More information about the ASN National Conference in Denver, including registration, schedule, and accommodations, are available on the ASN website,


Arts Schools Network is a non-profit association founded in 1981, dedicated to providing leaders in arts schools with quality resources, support, and networking opportunities.

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