What the Community and Others are Saying


What our community and others are saying about the educational, cultural, and economic impact of arts education.

Click the links to watch the videos:

Jacob MacKay, professional cellist, ConVal grad

Liz Wisan, professional actress, ConVal grad

Nora Fiffer, professional actress

Cathy Lanigan, President, Monadnock Chorus

Chris McCall, ConVal Parent

Elizabeth Moore,English Department Leader, Theatre Arts Program Director, ConVal High School

Krystal Morin, Choral Music Educator, ConVal High School

Mary Lou O’Neil, Former School to Career Coordinator, ConVal High School

Ingrid Aho, ConVal grad

“The performance space that you are envisioning is something that can not only serve our school and community, but really also be a draw for tourists, which is an increasingly important part of our local economy.”

Gordon Peery, President
Monadnock Center for History and Culture

“Keene is as vibrant a downtown as it is because of the Colonial Theatre.”

Bob Elliott, Chief Financial Officer
Monadnock Economic Development Corporation

“Our children need training and encouragement and support. They need rehearsal space and tempura paint and bass violins; teachers and tap shoes. They need constant, passionate exposure to the great artistic heritage of their people, so that even if they don’t grow up to be artists themselves, they will still have been blessed, as Americans have always been blessed, with the artist’s gift for seeing the possible in the impossible; the fellow on the other side of the fence.”

Michael Chabon, MacDowell, Vol. 37, No. 1, Summer 2008

“The game is changing. It isn’t just about math and science anymore. It’s about creativity, imagination and, above all, innovation.”

Dr. Alan Brinkley, Nevins Professor and former Provost
Columbia University
Business Week, 2007

“Having had two children who have come through the ConVal Drama Department, I am fully aware that the performing arts space is in serious need of an update. This project is vitally important for ConVal High School students but also for the community at large. Having worked with Children and The Arts Festival for 21 years, I am well aware of the limitations of local performance space and how these limitations hinder offering a first class experience for our community. The arts help make our community vital, and a wonderful visual and performing arts space will help the arts continue to thrive here.”

Terry Reeves, Director
Children and the Arts Festival

“My father, Richard E. Amidon, was on the building committee for ConVal.  He told me several times that the intention was always that the amphitheatre space would eventually be the site for an auditorium.”

Marcia Amidon Lusted, ConVal Class of 1980

“[Herbie] Hancock thinks that the arts may offer a better vehicle to teach math and science to some students. But he also sees value in touching students’ hearts through music – teaching them empathy, creative expression and the value of working together and keeping an open mind.”

Moriah Balingit, Educators want to pair math and music in an integrated teaching method, The Washington Post, April 26, 2016

“Participating in the performing arts at ConVal–both music and theater–gave me lasting friendships and helped me solidify my passion for classical music. As an arts administration professional at the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, I am deeply indebted to my peers and teachers at ConVal who taught me so much. An up-to-date performing arts space would be an incredible opportunity for students to create friendships, learn new skills, and encourage passions that will serve them both personally and professionally for years to come.”

Caroline Eichler
ConVal High School ’07