Arts

Art in its various forms has been a part of our school since its inception. Frederick Gunn wove music into the early fabric of the school and organized plays for his students and town residents, which led to the establishment of Washington’s amateur theatre group, the Dramalites. This commitment to making art part of the everyday experience for students, and finding ways to connect the school with the community through art, is renewed today with the opening of the Thomas S. Perakos Arts and Community Center. This beautiful new building supports The Frederick Gunn School’s Vision for Arts and Community and the continued growth of the school’s visual arts, music, theatre and dance programs. In addition to providing a place for students to develop and showcase their artistic abilities, the Thomas S. Perakos Arts and Community Center is creating opportunities to expand on new and existing partnerships between the school, local arts organizations, and the community.

Be Amazed. Be Amazing.

At The Frederick Gunn School, we ask students to learn to take public risks, to be makers not consumers, to be citizens who imagine a beautiful future without cynicism, to face failure with hope.

Vision for Arts and Community at FGS

Our Vision for Arts and Community at The Frederick Gunn School outlines four elements – Creation, Risk, Connection and Wonder – that are essential to each student’s experience in the arts.

At The Frederick Gunn School, we invite our students to be creators and makers. Whether in the visual or performing arts, students are asked to leave their mark on the world, to challenge someone to see the world in a new way, to express their perfectly unique point of view.

The arts also break down barriers for those who are nervous about trying new things, as well as those who want to actively engage in the arts for the rest of their lives. 

All students are required to take the equivalent of one credit in art. This can be accomplished through three single-term courses or one full-year course in our music, drama or visual arts programs. While the requirement is one credit, our students are encouraged, and often do take more than the required classes. The goal is for every student to recognize and appreciate the valuable role that art plays in our lives. 

Arts News

Gunn Music students Aryel Sealey, Stella Zhu and Colin Hall

Three students from the Gunn Music Program will perform at the Connecticut Music Educators Association’s All-State Music Festival being held this weekend, April 4-6, at the Connecticut Convention Center in Hartford. The students were selected by audition after qualifying for the CMEA Northern Region Festival in February. 
 

Nicole Zuraitis at Litchfield Jazz Camp in 2019

Fans of Litchfield Jazz Festival, which has been hosted at The Frederick Gunn School since 2019, were thrilled when Connecticut native Nicole Zuraitis won her first Grammy Award on February 4, at the 66th Annual Grammy Awards in Los Angeles. Zuraitis, a former student at Litchfield Jazz Camp, also hosted at Gunn, won the Grammy for Best Jazz Vocal Album for “How Love Begins.” This summer, she will return to campus as a vocal instructor at Litchfield Jazz Camp, and fans can see her perform at the festival’s Jazz Brunch on Sunday, July 28, 2024 in Bourne Courtyard.
 

Painting by Kelsey Ketchum '26

Twenty seven Gunn students enrolled in Visual Arts courses and the Technique and Artistry co-curricular program are participating in the Kent Art Association's 32nd Annual Student Art Show. An opening reception and awards ceremony were held on February 10. The gallery, located at 21 South Main Street in Kent, will be open to the public from 1-5 p.m. on February 15, 16, 17, 18, 22, 23, and 24.
 

Portrait by  Michal Schroeder '26

A new art exhibit featuring work by students in the Technique & Artistry co-curricular program opened in the Perakos Family Cares Art Gallery in late November. The multi-media show includes work by 24 students who participated in the program, led by visual arts teacher Andrew Richards P'20 '23, from the opening of school in September through the end of the Fall Term. The exhibit will remain on view through the end of December.
 

Big Noise From The North Pole graphic

The Frederick Gunn School Music Program will present a holiday concert, Big Noise From The North Pole, featuring performances by String Ensemble, Vocal Ensemble, Jazz Band, and special guests. This year's holiday concert is one night only, December 12, at 7 p.m. in the Tisch Family Auditorium of the Thomas S. Perakos Arts and Community Center, and is open to students and faculty only. A limited number of seats are available for Gunn families.
 

Gunn Musicians Selected to 2024 CMEA Regional Festival

Eight students from the Gunn Music Program have been selected to perform at the Connecticut Music Educators Association (CMEA) Northern Region Music Festival on January 12 and 13, 2024, at New Britain High School. The festival will feature selected students from 48 Connecticut towns, who will perform in the Northern Region Band, Jazz Band, Choral Ensemble, and Orchestral Ensemble. The snow dates for the festival are January 19 and 20, 2024.
 

"Behind the Clouds" by Catherine Lu '24

Two Gunn students are among the top selected photographers to be featured in the 13th annual ASAP!  Celebration of Young Photographers. Original photographs by Yoyo Zhang '24 and Catherine Lu '24 were among the top selections revealed this week via Instagram and will be included in a special exhibition on Sunday, November 12, 2023, from 2-4 p.m. at Spring Hill Vineyards in New Preston. Admission is free but pre-registration is required.