Fine Arts At Bishop England
The ability to create beautiful works of art is a gift from God. Bishop England High School provides opportunities for students to engage in the arts because the arts enrich the personhood of each student. The Fine Arts Department offers courses and activities in the areas of choral music, drama, music appreciation, music theory, and visual arts. Fine Arts faculty members commit to helping students to reach their potential in the arts, and rehearsals, vocal lessons and open studio time occur regularly each week.
Every student at Bishop England must have one fine arts credit to graduate. Many students elect to enroll in courses above the graduation requirement. More than twenty-nine percent of students are enrolled in fine arts courses each semester. A listing of fine arts courses can be found in the course offerings under academics. At Senior Awards, fine arts students are recognized for excellence in chorus, drama and visual art.
Through participation in arts clubs and activities, students experience camaraderie among their creative peers. Examples of ways that the students promote and advance the culture of the school include production of a literary magazine of writing and art, display of photography at the school and in the community, production of a play and a musical, choral performances, and participation in choir during Masses. Visual art activities include local and national art competitions and two art exhibit events each year.
Arts classes, rehearsals and performances take place in the Bishop Thompson Center for the Performing Arts. Bishop David B. Thompson (1923-2013) served as Bishop of Charleston from 1990-1999. Prior to retiring, Bishop Thompson had the vision of a performing arts center to enhance the theatrical and musical opportunities for Catholic students. The five hundred seat facility was dedicated on September 27, 2001. At the dedication, Bishop Thompson’s love for the arts and his support for Bishop England High School were celebrated by Bishop Robert Baker, priests and religious, BEHS alumni and faculty and friends of Bishop Thompson. The Fine Arts staff at Bishop England is infinitely grateful to the late Bishop Thompson for the legacy of his vision and leadership. Inquiries about the performing arts facility should be directed to Mike Darnell.