On Sunday, our students for this year’s Summer Arts Program finally arrived after much anticipation from the ADA staff. (An empty Villa is a lonely Villa indeed!) They’ve been braving the heat, which has risen to nearly 40 degrees Celsius this week, to explore Arezzo while getting to know each other and the ADA. We pulled a few students aside this week to get their first impressions of their time with us for SAP – here’s what they had to say!
Where are you from originally? Portland, Oregon
What school do you attend and what do you study there? I attend the University of the Arts, in Philadelphia, PA, where I study Musical Theatre.
Where are you from originally? Hangzhou, China
What school do you attend and what do you study there? I attend the University of Rochester. I am an art history and mathematics double major.
Where are you from originally? Los Angeles, California.
What school do you attend and what do you study there? I recently graduated from Case Western Reserve University, where I studied Theatre, Psychology, and Journalism.
Where are you from originally? I am a native born Texan, but I have been living in Hayward, California for the last 10 years.
What school do you attend and what do you study there? I am a nursing student entering my fourth year at California State University East Bay.
What are you studying here at ADA and why did you choose those classes?
Jason: I am studying Commedia dell’Arte and Film. I have always been fascinated by Commedia dell’Arte but I have not had much exposure to the art. Film is a new passion that I have discovered, and using Arezzo as a backdrop is the perfect way for me to delve more deeply into it.
Reyna: I am taking Mask Making and Art History. Hopefully, I will gain a greater appreciation for art from the Art History class and explore my artistic side in Mask Making.
Yi: I study Documentary Film and Intermediate Italian. Film appeals to me since I am always interested in observing things and finding an objective way to represent that reality. Italian is necessary to communicate with people and enjoy life in Italy deeper and more fully.
Katie: I am taking Commedia dell’Arte and Mask Making. I’ve had a long passion for mask work, and I wanted to have an immersive experience in the production and use of masks. I’ve tried tinkering with plaster before but I’ve never had the opportunity to make real, leather masks.
What has surprised you so far about life in Italy or at the ADA?
Yi: The food is even more delicious than the last time I was here. I studied in Arezzo for three months with my home university last year, but now I can explore so much more, geographically and culturally, maybe because of the change in season. It is amazing to find so many new things, because Arezzo is a rather small place.
Katie: I was surprised how easy it was for me to adjust to life in Italy. The culture is completely different and I expected it to be quite the culture shock, but really, people are people no matter where you go. It is more fascinating than it is scary.
Jason: I am pleasantly surprised that everywhere I have been the food has been phenomenal – especially here at ADA! I love the laid back atmosphere of Italy, while also having a plethora of artistic activities to learn about or experiment with.
Reyna: I had always known that Tuscany would be beautiful but I am constantly shocked to see just how beautiful it is here. You cannot turn around and not see something absolutely gorgeous. Simply put, Arezzo is stunning. Aside from the scenery, another happy surprise I have experienced is to see how marvelously everyone here gets along. We all became fast friends and it is great to see how everyone looks out for one another.
What are you most looking forward to in the next month?
Jason: Getting to know the city of Arezzo and its people better, as well as learning more about and from my fellow classmates.
Yi: I would like to meet more Italians to practice my Italian and learn about their culture. Also I want to have some group activities within Accademia dell’Arte, just to get to know our friends more.
Reyna: There are so many things I am looking forward to doing. I can’t wait to see how my mask is going to turn out, go shopping with my roommates in town, travel to other places, see more glorious sunsets, and eat even more gelato. Mostly, I want to learn more about Italian culture and the city of Arezzo.
Katie: I look forward to creating a more specific vocabulary of movement. Movement-based work, including mask work, has never been easy for me. I am excited to spend the time working on a craft that I find both challenging and fascinating.