April 30, 2024

Backstage at the Egyptian: Tricia Schumacher talks the District 428 Art Show

The District 428 Art Show at the Egyptian Theatre annually spotlights the remarkable talents of DeKalb School District 428 students, showcasing diverse artworks ranging from paintings to digital media. Tricia Schumacher, the event’s coordinator, underscores the significance of the venue’s historical charm and central location in downtown DeKalb. She emphasizes the transformative role of art education in nurturing creativity, critical thinking, and cultural appreciation among students, aiming to inspire audiences and spark discussions about the profound impact of arts on individuals and communities.

PAMELA: Can you tell us a little about the District 428 Art Show and why the Egyptian Theatre was
chosen as the venue to hold the show?
TRICIA: The District 428 Art Show is an annual event that showcases the incredible talent
of students from DeKalb School District 428. The Egyptian Theatre was chosen
as the venue to hold the show due to its historical significance, spacious layout,
and central location in downtown DeKalb. 

We asked ourselves “what is the place of pride in DeKalb, what says “you’ve
made it” and we unanimously voted for the Egyptian! 

Additionally, the renovation has improved lighting and display capabilities even
more to  provide the perfect backdrop for displaying a wide variety of artwork,
ranging from paintings and sculptures to digital media and mixed media pieces.

P: What do you hope students get out of art programs?
T: In art programs, I hope students gain not only technical skills but also a deeper
understanding and appreciation for creativity, self-expression, and cultural
diversity. Art fosters critical thinking, problem-solving, and communication skills,
which are valuable in all aspects of life. Furthermore, participation in art
programs allows students to explore their individual interests and talents,
fostering a sense of identity and confidence.

P: Why is it important to support students interested in art?
T: It is important to support students interested in art because art education
provides numerous benefits beyond the classroom. By nurturing creativity,
imagination, and problem solving,  art programs empower students to think
outside the box and approach challenges with innovation and originality.
Additionally, exposure to art can enhance students’ empathy, cultural awareness,
and understanding of the world around them.

P: What is the significance of showcasing students' artwork at the Egyptian Theatre?
T: Showcasing students’ artwork at the Egyptian Theatre holds significance as it
provides a professional and prestigious platform for students to display their
talents to the community. The theatre’s grandeur and historical charm add an
extra layer of importance and excitement to the event, elevating the students’
work and underscoring the value of arts education in our community.

P: How has art influenced students’ lives? 
T: Art has a profound influence on students’ lives by providing a means of self-
expression, personal growth, and emotional exploration. For many students,
involvement in art programs serves as a source of inspiration, motivation, and
purpose. Art fosters a sense of belonging and connection, empowering students
to share their unique perspectives and stories with the world. I have a unique
perspective as a teacher, the coordinator and as a parent. I have seen my own
son grow in confidence and talent over his four years at DeKalb High School. 

P: What do you hope the audience takes away from this year’s art show?
T: This year’s art show aims to inspire and celebrate creativity, showcasing the
diverse talents and perspectives of students in District 428. I hope the audience
leaves the show feeling inspired, moved, and uplifted by the creativity and
passion displayed in the artwork. Additionally, I hope the show sparks
conversations about the importance of arts education and the impact it has on
students’ lives and our community as a whole.