Hello ASA Alumni!

Twenty-five years ago, I never dreamed that I would be celebrating ASA’s Silver Anniversary with families and friends from long ago and up to the present day. Not because I didn’t believe in the vision ASA set forth all those years ago, but because we were so deep into the day-to-day creation of that vision it was hard to see beyond June 1996. During our first decade, we spent much of our time proving that our untraditional approach to learning would be as transformative as we believed it could be.
Leah Fregulia, Head of School and CEO
Over time, we learned that we were not just teaching two parallel programs - arts and academics - but also a third unofficial curriculum that is more powerful than either on its own. The interplay between the arts and academics blended perfectly to cultivate both the creative and analytical mind. Performance and presentations aligned in the skills they required, collaboration techniques in the classroom and in ensembles merged, the endless cycle of practice perform, critique, and repeat seeped from the arts over into the academic process, inquiry and Socratic discussion in the classroom emerged from the classroom and into student-led clubs and alliances and community engagement even outside the ASA gates. The connections seem endless and ever-evolving, transforming all of us in the process.

You, our cherished alumni and alumni families, are the foundation that informed the vision along the way. Our 25th Anniversary celebration – Home: An ASA Virtual Showcase – celebrates the place and people who have made ASA their intellectual, creative, and often social home over the years. Although we cannot physically be together, we will enjoy a production with both pre-recorded and live streamed performances from our campus. And because we are virtual you can join us from wherever you are! Prior to the show on June 3rd at 5 pm (MST) we are having TWO REUNIONS – one for our alumni and one for alumni parents through, a virtual gathering space where you will be able to connect in various rooms. More information and a link to register are contained in this newsletter. Alumni will also receive an invitation for a half-price ($25) ticket to Home: An ASA Virtual Showcase for your family and/or friend pod so you can join us after the reunion. In this issue and during Showcase, we will also be honoring three special alumni, kicking off a new annual tradition.  

I hope all of you will join me for our Silver Anniversary, back where it all began - our ASA Home.
Leah Fregulia 
Meet the 2021 Alumni Award Honorees
On Thursday, June 3rd at 7:00 p.m. Arizona School for the Arts will be presenting Home: An ASA Virtual Showcase, the public capstone to our 25th anniversary year. As part of a new tradition, we will be honoring three distinguished alumni representing ASA’s past, present and future during the livestream event. We hope that you will be able to join us during Showcase as we highlight their tenure at ASA, their adventures since that time and what they hope to achieve in the future. If you don’t know them already, please meet our 2021 honorees, below!
2021 Distinguished Alumni Award Honorees
Class of 2000

Perhaps Arizona School for the Arts’ most famous alumnus, David Hallberg has led a storied career in the world of dance. Coming to ASA as a tap dancer, he quickly found his milieu in ballet and there has been no stopping him since. From School of Ballet Arizona to the Paris Opera Ballet School to the American Ballet Theatre’s Studio Company, he went from strength to strength to strength as a student until joining ABT in 2001 and becoming a Principal Dancer in May 2005. David made history as the first American to become a Premier Dancer with the Bolshoi Ballet in 2011, dancing the role of the Prince in The Sleeping Beauty at the first ballet performance in the renovated Bolshoi Theatre. He has performed with the Paris Opera Ballet and the La Scala Ballet and won several prizes for his art including the 2010 Benois de la Danse Prize as best male dancer for his performance as Albrecht in Giselle with American Ballet Theatre.

Class of 2009

Currently a second-year PhD student in the Department of History at Cornell University, Kelsey Jennings Roggensack credits ASA’s creative thinking strategy with how she approaches her education to this day. After receiving her Bachelor of Arts degree at Williams College in 2013 Kelsey explored opportunities in and around Boston and then worked as a Fulbright English Teaching Assistant in Indonesia. After working in Indonesia for almost two years, she returned to the United States and received her Master’s Degree in Education from Harvard University, Graduate School of Education in 2018. Kelsey says that attending ASA since the 6th grade left her with the feeling that she is free to explore her educational opportunities without being defined by any one direction.

Class of 2018
2021 Rising Star Alumnus Award Honoree
Arizona School for the Arts’ 2018 Valedictorian, Stephen Dabrowski, was very excited to come to ASA as a 6th grader. Throughout his tenure here, Stephen felt that being surrounded by so many talented people inspired him to work his hardest in school in order to expand his own capabilities. From Mock Trial Finals at Yale University to representing his school as a Lead Ambassador, he always strove to do his best work.

Connect With Other ASA Student & Parent Alumni!
Some Kind of Wonder(ful): Join The Pre-Showcase Events

When the idea of an alumni newsletter was proposed, our goal was not simply for ASA to connect with its alumni, but for you to connect with each other. We are so excited to offer you an opportunity to do just that on a very special evening. 

Arizona School for the Arts is hosting a virtual reunion just prior to Home: An ASA Showcase for our alumni to get together with each other and faculty guest hosts in a virtual room created for the occasion on Wonder. Check it out. This fascinating platform will allow you to move from group to group within your room; you may start out with your classmates and then drift over to say hello to a friend from another year or a favorite faculty member. No waiting or breakout rooms, no agenda or outcomes, simply enter and socialize freely! This is an opportunity to check out a new platform and engage and catch-up with other ASA Student Alumni and Faculty/Staff. 

If you are interested in attending this completely free event, please sign up here. After registration, you will be sent a link to the Wonder room for your use
on June 3rd.
As the newest addition to our alumni circle, we certainly don’t want our Parents of Alumni group to miss out on the fun. There will be an event for alumni parents hosted by Jennifer Bonnett. As the parent of two recent graduates and a rising Senior, Jennifer has been a driving force in the effort to maintain the ASA bonds not just for our former students, but for their families as well. 

Like the student alumni reunion, no specific agenda or outcomes – this is an opportunity to check out a new platform and engage with other ASA parents of alumni! Don’t forget to sign up to receive your free link to the pre-Showcase Wonder room here.

Both virtual events will be held from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. (MST) on Thursday, June 3, 2021, on the website. We cannot wait to see you there!

If you cannot wait until June to connect with your fellow alumni parents to see how they are doing, we have created a dedicated Parent Alumni Connect group associated with the Arizona School for the Arts Facebook page. 

Join up and share with your fellow parents of ASA graduates or with parents you know will be part of your ranks very soon.
HOME: An ASA Virtual Showcase 
Join Us for Showcase with Special 25th Anniversary Alumni Pricing!
The Wonder reunion is to let you know that on this 25th Anniversary year we are thinking of you and want you to be a part of our celebrations, so don’t let the fun end at 7:00 p.m. on June 3rd; we have another treat in store.

Because we would love to see as many of our alumni as possible join us for HOME: An ASA Virtual Showcase, we have special $25.00 virtual tickets just for our student alumni that include the household livestream link and automatically comes with the Wonder link to the alumni reunion. We would love to see you support our current students in this streaming event that will feature the creativity of our staff and students in a combination of live and recorded performances from both an arts and smarts perspective. Here’s a sneak peek at just a little of what we have in store. It has been a challenging year, but we celebrate what ties the ASA community together, especially during our 25th anniversary. We celebrate our home.

Reserve your ticket today on the Alumni webpage but also take a look at the other ticket packages available including the Parent of Alumni Virtual Ticket as well as the 25th Anniversary Celebration Packages which allow you to make a night of it with a household livestream access link, a $50 Grubhub e-gift certificate, a set of two stainless steel stemless wine glasses, two ASA 25th Anniversary pins & stickers, plus access to a post-show "Talkback" with creative minds and talent behind "Home: An ASA Showcase". AND you are still invited to the pre-Showcase alumni reception!

Whatever option you choose, your interest and support of Arizona School for the Arts are seen and appreciated. For 25 Years, Showcase has been one of ASA’s most anticipated events of the year. Both a fundraiser for the school and an opportunity for the community to celebrate the growth of student artists and honor distinguished alumni, Showcase is centered around the idea that the arts gain meaning when they’re both shared and witnessed.

Showcase Sponsorship, Pay it Forward
One of the things that make Arizona School for the Arts the proudest of its alumni is the varied and interesting places their paths in life have taken them. What we hear from our alum time and again is that ASA gave them the foundation to move in the world around them with confidence.

Along with the ticket information on the Showcase webpage, you will find sponsorship opportunities for this event. Do you or someone you know work for an organization that would like to show their support of arts and education? We ask that you use these connections to share our sponsorship packet, which allows a potential sponsor to choose their level of support and corresponding exposure online, on campus, and during the Showcase livestream. 

Now more than ever, the students at ASA can use that support. The past year has shown the importance of an education that blends academic and artistic excellence as an underpinning to a student’s growth and wellbeing. As Leah Fregulia says, “These pandemic times have highlighted what ASA has known for 25 years – that the arts are both fundamental to knitting our community together and to the individual development, social, and emotional health, motivation and ultimate success of our young people.”

Even if you are not comfortable making an “ask” yourself, please contact ASA’s Director of Development and Marketing, Leslie Religioso, at with an introduction. Your connections and endorsement can make a meaningful impact and help us reach our goal so that we can continue to provide the same excellent standard of education you or your children received.
Spread the Word!
Very often, the best connections to our alumni are other alumni. Are you in touch with someone that we may not be? Please forward this Pigeon Post newsletter to them. 

We would love to see as many of our alumni – both student and parent – at the pre-Showcase alumni reunions as possible. Reaching out and connecting can only make all of our bonds stronger and help move Arizona School for the Arts past our 25th anniversary with a vibrant community that embraces our past and present and looks towards the future.
Arizona School for the Arts inspires creative thinkers and leaders through providing an innovative concentration in college preparation informed by the performing arts.
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