The Student Site of Castilleja School


The Student Site of Castilleja School


The Student Site of Castilleja School


Dance at Casti returns with a new look

Michaela Miller
The show, formerly called “Arts with a Heart,” will look a bit different this year according to dance teacher Karl Kuehn

Castilleja announced the school will still put on a dance production in the spring, though the show will be held later than usual and will feature key differences from past performances.

Following the departure of Castilleja’s former dance teacher in 2021, Georgianna Shea, the dance production workshop course and later Shea’s brainchild, Arts With a Heart, were dissolved. Shea oversaw Arts With a Heart, an annual fundraiser event put on by the dance production workshop and dance 8 students, since its inaugural performance in 2005.

The show, now called the 2024 Dance Production, is scheduled to be held March 8 and 9, 2024 instead of in February and will be led by Castilleja dance teacher Karl Kuehn, who served as a faculty advisor to the final student-led Arts With a Heart production.

“We started a little bit later in the game just to work through some of these transitional pieces, to make this work for everyone,” Kuehn said.

Kuehn announced Nov. 14 at upper school meeting that the theme for the Dance Production will be “Dancing Through the Decades.” Unlike Arts With a Heart, the show will not be a fundraising event, though Kuehn said he plans to work with the ACE Center to come up with three options for local nonprofits that focus on the performing arts for the production to partner with.

“There are some changes, but there are still a lot of the similarities that have existed in the previous years with AwaH, just restructured a bit under my guidance and direction,” Kuehn said.

Despite the increase in teacher involvement in the show, “There will still be a lot of student involvement,” Kuehn said. “So they will have full creative control over what they are bringing to life on stage.”

Deciding which nonprofit to partner with is a task for the show’s eighth grade “focus and outreach liaisons,” one of the various opportunities for student involvement in the show, which are applied positions divided by grade level.

Instead of live auditions, the Dance Production took video submissions. According to Kuehn, the format accommodates dancers on Castilleja’s JCC satellite campus, who Kuehn said will, similarly to how they would for an athletic event, use the school’s shuttle routes to get to rehearsals.

Kuehn said his next steps for the production are to begin rehearsals as soon as possible to catch up on missed time in the fall. For questions about the show, email [email protected].

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About the Contributors
Ruby Dowling
Ruby Dowling, Editor-in-Chief
Ruby Wright Dowling ’24 is an Editor-in-Chief of Counterpoint. She attended the Medill-Northwestern Journalism Institute in 2023 and is now an editorial intern at the Los Altos Town Crier. When she’s not reporting, Ruby enjoys scorekeeping at baseball games—especially when the Red Sox are in town.
Michaela Miller
Michaela Miller, Photographer
Michaela Miller ‘27 is a photographer for Counterpoint. When she is not taking photos, or editing photos, she's probably playing tennis, playing video games or eating Trader Joe’s Takis.

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