Students Push Boundaries at CSU Summer Arts

Stephanie Thara



CSU Summer Arts 

Students are pushing their boundaries and tapping undiscovered artistic talents during CSU Summer Arts at CSU Monterey Bay this summer. For the past 30 years, the program has defined high-impact learning by offering courses that challenge students to step out of their comfort zone, explore different types of art forms, and create the most talented showcases.

Summer Arts 2015, which wraps up in August, offers 18 courses, ranging from a Cirque Show Intensive where students use every muscle in their body to perform daring circus tricks to Musical Theatre Success where students learn to make connections with the audience through effective musical theatre storytelling.

“This has been a truly transcending experience,” said Cal State Long Beach theater arts major Corey Hedy. “At first, it was difficult becoming vulnerable and willing to fail at new things, but the difference is now I am more open with my journey.”​

CSU Summer Arts Cique Show IntensiveFrom sunrise to sunset, students work with world-renowned guest artists, seasoned CSU faculty and fellow budding artists to perfect their craft. Students are fully immersed in an environment where everything they do is dedicated to learning new experiences and processes that will enhance their skills and abilities as an artist. Connor Tribole, an incoming junior at Cal State Long Beach, said that CSU Summer Arts was the perfect place to work on his craft all day, every day.

“This place is like an artistic prison—but in the best way possible” said Tribole. “What’s great is that I’m surrounded by like-minded people, where everyone lives, eats, breathes art, and we are all trying to find our artistic voice together.”

Throughout the session, students have the opportunity to learn artistic techniques and then apply what they have learned to teach others. For example, during CONTRA-TIEMPO Urban Latin Dance Theater— a powerful hybrid of dance, theatre and music —students work one-on-one with guest artists from professional dance companies. Once students have a solid foundation of the topic, they will support guest instructors and lead training sessions for underserved youth in the Monterey Bay community.

“You’ll be asked to do uncomfortable things, but that’s how you grow and learn,” said CSU Summer Arts Director Rachel Nardo to students during orientation. “At the end of this program, you are going to learn, teach, make friends and mentors, and find champions for your work. So open your hearts to different types of learning and push yourselves as artists.”

For more information about CSU Summer Arts, please visit