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Briarcliff Art and Music Fest Kicks Off Tuesday

BRIARCLIFF MANOR, N.Y. – From film to music to ceramics to painting – if it’s art, it’s going to be at the Briarcliff Middle School and High School this week.

More than 200 art and music students from Briarcliff Middle School and Briarcliff High School are coming together this week in the Briarcliff School District ’s annual art and music festival. The festival that dates back more than 20 years, is set to feature performances from the school orchestra and jazz bands, short films and hundreds of paintings, photography and ceramics from every art student in the district.

This year, residents can expect to be “blown away,” said Roxanne Ritacco, the district’s art director.

“You really don’t know how talented a student can be at 16 or 17 years old until you see what they’ve got to offer,” Ritacco said. “Some of these students have put out work that is as good or better than any professional piece. It’s really quite spectacular to see just how talented these students are.”

The free celebration begins with the opening of the middle school festival at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday in the middle school lobby and café. The high school show begins at 6:30 p.m. Thursday in the lobby of the Dr. Frances G. Wills Auditorium. While performances are scheduled throughout both evenings, Ritacco said the artwork is set to be featured throughout the week.

“We will highlight a few pieces and performances but this is more about the celebration of our entire art student community,” she said. “Even if people don’t have kids in the school system, they’re going to love it and be amazed to see what our kids can do.”

Jean Linville, Briarcliff High School art instructor, said this week’s festival gives community members a chance to see the future of Briarcliff artwork.

“Our students rarely have a huge showcase for their works and it’s also rare that people in the entire community get a chance to see it,” she said. “This is the one chance a year that parents and art enthusiasts alike have to see the future of their art community and it’s pretty wonderful.”

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