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February 11, 2019 Minutes: KLSD ArtsALIVE Board of Directors Meeting

KLSD ArtsALIVE Board of Directors Meeting

February 11, 2019

Call to Order:

KLSD ArtsALIVE Co-President Julie Oyen called the regular meeting of the KLSD ArtsALIVE Board to order at 7:00 p.m. at the John Jay Middle School conference room.

Roll Call:

The following Board Members / Committee Reps were present:

  • Maureen Birmingham
  • Julie Oyen
  • Colleen Cerami-Siegel
  • Monica Bermiss
  • Steven Siciliano
  • Vinnie Bell
  • Andrew Meikle
  • Lauren Doyle
  • Liz Gebbia
  • Barbara Milone
  • Lily Oyen, Student Rep


The following Board Members / Committee Reps were not present:

  • Jen Dembo
  • Mary Ann Davis
  • Sarah McMahon
  • Lori McQuade
  • Kathleen Fay Wisehart
  • Gia Miller
  • Margaret Adasko
  • Deb Spieler
  • Marcia Daley-Savo
  • Diane Richman
  • Amanda Godsoe
  • Topaz LeTourneau



Andrew Meikle motioned to accept the minutes from the January Board Meeting. Colleen Cerami-Siegel seconded the motion. Approved.


JJHS Hallway Display

Julie reported a laminating machine had been purchased for the artwork displayed in the JJHS Gallery. She mentioned help is needed to finish with the artwork and asked anyone who might be interested to please contact her.

Upcoming Events

The group discussed the importance of promoting the JJMS and JJHS musicals. While we will continue to sell roses at both musicals, Colleen introduced two new fundraising ideas:

  • Regarding Guys and Dolls, Colleen suggested having a fundraiser at each performance that plays off the theme of craps.
  • For the middle school, we can sell special messages for the cast/crew that can be brought backstage prior to the start of the show

Julie also mentioned decorating the high school theatre wing to generate some excitement and support any publicity efforts. Colleen added we could play off the Cuban theme.

JayFest will start Friday, 4/26, and continue through Saturday, 4/27. Colleen explained KLSDAA participated last year with the John Jay sports boosters. Vinnie mentioned the possibility of organizing Music on the Lawn again. The group discussed what our involvement should be this year considering the volunteer commitment that’s needed. Lily noted if students can get volunteer hours for JayFest, she thinks students would sign up. The group decided to table further discussion until a chairperson is named.

Julie reviewed the calendar of additional upcoming events, including Rock the Halls on May 10 at JJMS and the JJHS Variety Show on June 7-8. Maureen has volunteered to chair Rock the Halls.

For any of the performing arts events where flowers will be sold, Liz will research using a local vendor for the flowers rather than the current supplier in Stamford, CT.

Music Meets Art at JJMS

Monica Bermiss reported the all-school event will take place during Periods 8 and 9 on February 14th. During lunchtime that day, students will write emotional words that are based on the music played by the DJ. Words will be written on Post-Its and will be used as part of the live artwork that the artist creates. The DJ will provide a history of hip-hip music, as well.

A KLSD media rep will attend and live stream the event. KLSDAA Student Board members are welcome to attend and the presentation will be about an hour. Maureen offered to represent KLSDAA at the event.

Following Monica’s report, Colleen announced that JJHS VJ came in first place in its division at the Berklee HS Jazz Festival. Gia has written a great article for the newsletter and interviewed some of the VJ students. KLSDAA would like to purchase sweatshirts for the VJ students and Casey Wilcox has developed a design. KLSDAA will give the VJ students a sweatshirt and plaque with the students’ names engraved. Steven Morse suggested we create a photo collage with the kids’ picture. Pricing will come at future meeting and Julie will follow up.


Operational Update

Regarding Constant Contact, there is progress being made updating the information. Ultimately, a data base manager will be needed to keep it updated to ensure information remains accurate.

Maureen volunteered to be a calendar administrator. The goal is to give members access so they can subscribe to our calendar and get updates to auto populate their personal calendar. A student could also manage this task as there is no confidential information. A student could receive volunteer hours for this project. Angelina and Amanda Urban will look into which students might be interested.

BOE Update

Barbara summarized highlights of the most recent BOE meeting:

  • JJVJ performed at the meeting and it was mentioned that their respectful behavior at Berklee was noticed and called out by other attendees
  • Presentation from tech director and some of the teachers – integration model student engagement and deepening of student learning through tech
  • Mobility for faculty and now student and teachers are collaborating more
  • Apple TV and how used for composition in Amy Geiger’s class
  • PSAs – using film, social media and filters
  • Commitment to technology and how much should younger kids use tech
  • Reviewed potential changes to school start times for next year

JJHS Orchestra Concert Pizza Night Re-Cap

Julie shared with the group that student musicians stayed at school following their concert to answer questions for younger students about the orchestra program. She added that KLSDAA offered pizza to entice people to come, which was very easy to coordinate and helped to boost attendance. She explained that several younger musicians went to the concert because their orchestra/music teachers had suggested they come and they wanted to meet members of the orchestra. The group also discussed having the same type of meet-and-greet with pizza for the JJHS spring band concert.

A discussion ensued about selling pizza at other performing arts events. Vinnie explained if the cafeteria is closed, KLSDAA is permitted to sell food items.

Other Business

  • Following this discussion, Colleen and Lauren reported on the opportunity for launching a literary magazine next year. Reflections was a literally magazine that had been published in the past. It would be nice to publish children’s writing for the younger kids – middle and elementary schools; all submitted pieces would be included. Monica added there is a newspaper at JJMS, but not a literary mag. Steven asked Lauren to follow up with him, via email, about resources that would be necessary to produce a magazine.


  • Colleen/Julie have requested dates for next year’s Encore Cabaret. Vinnie reported that dates are being reviewed by district. In response to a question from Julie, Vinnie replied the district should be updating the link to KLSDAA. As the link brings users to a 2016 page, it’s critical this be done as soon as possible.


  • Monica shared the JJMS chamber orchestra is ready to perform and is looking for opportunities. The group discussed one opportunity might be for the students to perform in the JJHS theater lobby before and during intermission of JJHS shows.


  • Regarding JayFest, Steven suggested to have only the acapella groups participate this year and next year be more prepped with more planning – possibly host music on the lawn, which could be a half-time show. Vinnie would organize this initiative since KLSDAA is not permitted to reach out to students. Student rock group Mother Goose might want to perform. KLSDAA would not be involved if Vinnie handles the music logistics.


  • Steven also mentioned Principal’s Pasta Night and the possibility of having the students perform. He will be back in touch with further details.


  • Vinnie reported that stage production will be incorporated into the JJHS advanced level acting class. It will be offered as Actors Studio and Stage Production with Mr. Friedman.


There being no other business to discuss, the meeting adjourned at 8:25 p.m.


Minutes submitted by Liz Gebbia

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