May 31, 2012
-- Westlake Village, California—Oaks Christian School’s Class of 2012 has distinguished itself in the arts and furthered the vision of OCS Founders David Price and Dallas Price-Van Breda. Over the past 12 years, the arts have been celebrated at Oaks Christian School from middle school through high school with expanded dance, orchestra, band, choral music and theatre programs. Under the direction of professional performing arts faculty, students have flourished with opportunities to spearhead new arts programs such as student-directed Bare Bones Productions, The Oaks Chamber Strings (an honors performing group), the student founded OCS Jazz Combo, and Oaks Radio with music, literature and sports webcast programming.
The May 31 OCS Commencement Ceremonies demonstrated the Class of 2012’s excellence in the arts as well as academics. Out of 194 graduates, 21 OCS students will be pursuing visual and performing arts degrees at highly selective university programs. Oaks Radio Chairperson Julia Rich will be attending the prestigious Clive Davis School at New York University. OCS Thespian of the Year Rachel Matthews has performed in award-winning OCS musicals such as “Into The Woods.” Matthews’
role as Cinderella in “Into The Woods” earned her a National Youth Arts Award in 2011. She will attend the Tisch School for the Performing Arts at New York University. The OCS 2012 Outstanding Senior for Contributions to the Arts Award was given to Caroline Dahl who has performed in multiple OCS theatre productions, having recently starred as Reno Sweeney in “Anything Goes.” Dahl will attend University of Southern California’s School of Theatre. Accomplished singer and theater student Brooke Randol has been accepted into the competitive Popular Music Program at University of Southern California (USC). Paul Butcher has delighted audiences in OCS musicals for four years and, recently, as Billy Crocker in “Anything Goes.” He will be attending University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), majoring in music. Other stand-out arts students include Melissa Passaretti and Chelsea Wales who will attend Belmont University’s Music Business Program, and student-director Summer Grubaugh who will be pursuing her Bachelor of Fine Arts in Stage Management degree from USC, and Yalun Gao who will study cinematography in the Presidential Honors Scholar Program at New York University. Both Nicole McAmis and Mason Lewis received OCS Outstanding Pianist Awards. McAmis will attend Washington University in St. Louis and Lewis received a full music scholarship to UCLA. Sarah Hiepler received the National School Orchestra Award and received the OCS Dallas Price-Van Breda Award for Artistic Excellence. Recipient of The Artists Scholarship Award, Hiepler will attend Southern Methodist University. Jazz Combo co-founders Nate Blackmon (University of California, Berkeley) and Cameron MacGregor (Notre Dame University) also received musical achievement awards--The Quincy Jones Award and the John Philip Sousa Award, respectively. Accomplished musician Cole Daly was presented the Louis Armstrong Award in Jazz and will be attending Wheaton University.