Stanning STAN

by Tharindi Jayatilake for Silver Quest

Despite challenges posed by this year’s virtual environment, Blazers in both the STEM Magnet program and STEM Academy joined forces to successfully produce an online STEM Arts Night in March. The event was directed by seniors Yuri Kim and Yalissa Scott, junior Isabella Tang, and math teacher Edward Kirk.

To bring STAN to life, the directors chose YouTube Live, which allowed live streaming to anyone interested, regardless of location. The live show let people cheer on their classmates and talk to each other in the chat — a benefit that performer Asher Labovich was especially appreciative of. "The best part about MAN last year was the social experience, so I’m really glad they found a way to keep it alive this year," Labovich, a junior, says.

Similarly, Scott loved meeting new people through producing STAN. "My favorite part of being a director was interacting with people I probably never would have spoken to," she shares.

In previous years, this annual showcase was exclusively for Magnet students and thus known as Magnet Arts Night; however, this year, auditions and performances broadened to include Magnet and STEM Academy students alike.

According to Kim, this change compounded with the virtual environment made advertising challenging. "It was difficult to reach out to people and advertise online, since we couldn’t go into classrooms or recruit people directly," Kim explains. "It was especially challenging to reach out to underclassmen and the STEM academy, who had never participated in STAN before."

Nonetheless, the directors' and performers' hard work resulted in a one-of-a-kind show, including an immersive art display, Hamilton enactments, covers of favorite pop songs, and dance styles from around the world.

The STEM Academy and Magnet students, teachers, and families can all look forward to more artistry — hopefully in-person — in upcoming years!