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Fine Arts

Welcome to Union Fine Arts!

Matthew McCready

Matthew McCready
Director of Fine Arts  / Biography

Charles Pisarra

Charles Pisarra
Associate Director of Fine Arts Intern / Director of Union Bands / Biography

Fine Arts Department - Fine Arts Directory
Union Mulitpurpose Activity Center (second floor)
6836 S. Mingo
Tulsa, Oklahoma 74133-3247

Phone: 918-357-7414 / Fax: 918-357-7498

Union SchoolsUnion Public Schools has one of the truly outstanding fine arts programs in the nation. A talented and dedicated staff, strong parental and community support, as well as the support of the administration and school board, have provided our students with a wide variety of opportunities to explore and develop their talents. Union's exceptional facilities, including the 2,000-seat Union Performing Arts Center and the Union Multipurpose Activity Center as well as two black-box studio theaters, give students outstanding venues in which to perform. The fine arts wing at the 6th/7th Grade Center has also been expanded to accommodate a greater interest in music and choir and the 8th Grade Center is in the midst of an expansion to handle more students as well.

  • In 2014-2015, more than 14,425 Union students were involved in some form of the arts, including 6,922 elementary students who took both art and music classes.  At the secondary level (grades 6-12), 1,017 were in band; 598 in orchestra; 1,401 in vocal music; 1,556 in drama; 235 in competitive speech/debate; and 2,462 in a wide variety of visual arts disciplines.

Students district wide display their talents during the annual "YouthArts!" Festival, an extensive, colorful, visual and performing arts exhibition representing the more than 8,000 students involved in the fine arts, as well as the annual All-School Musical held every winter, featuring shows ranging from Beauty and the Beast to Lez Miserables.

Several Union alumni have made national achievements thanks to their start in Union's Fine Arts from actor Wesam Keesh to 2013 Miss Oklahoma Kelsey Griswold, who finished third in Miss America  to Melinda Doolitttle, who finished third in American Idol. The Renegade Regiment was also featured in the 2013 Macy's Thanksgiving Day parade with a televised audience of 50 million people.

Fine Arts covers a myriad of disciplines including ceramics, drawing and painting, photography, choir, music, speech and debate to flag corps.

Visual Arts

Union SchoolsOne of Union's most popular Fine Arts offerings is visual art. This discipline is taught to all elementary students and remains a strong favorite at the secondary level with more than 1,300 students enrolled in art, ceramics, painting or photography. Union offers one of the few AP (Advanced Placement) Visual Art programs in the state. Many of our students turn their ability in art into scholarships at major art institutes and universities. Recently, a large number of students from Union High School were honored at the National Scholastic Art Exhibition.

Vocal Music 

The Vocal Music program includes all elementary students and is a strong elective at the secondary level. Union has a long record of excellence in concerts, performances by show groups, Broadway musicals and competitions at the local and regional level. Our singers, utilizing Orff and Kodaly methods from grade one, have achieved an enviable record in performance and sight reading competitions. Many of our students have received major university scholarships and have become successful teachers and performers. Broadway musicals such as a recent production of Annie and performances of major works as part of Union’s “Masterworks” series are part of our vocal music program.

Union Public School is well represented in arts events such as TulsaFest, Tulsa Summerarts, the Oklahoma Summerarts Institute; and many of our students are featured in community theater musicals. Choruses comprised of younger students have been sought to accompany major performing artists when they perform in Tulsa.

Speech/Debate - Christian Jones, Director of Forensics

Members of the Speech/Debate squads compete almost every weekend throughout the school year. With individual honors at every meet, including national qualifiers and many ‘Meet Sweepstakes Trophies,’ these young people are representative of the wonderful program in place for debate and competitive speech.

Music Theory/Technology

Union SchoolsStudents at Union High School have exceptional opportunities in the area of Music Theory and Music Technology. Union boasts one of the best AP Music Theory courses in the state. Many AP Music Theory students are able to skip one or even two years of college music theory because of their excellent preparation.

Another exciting addition to our curriculum is the piano lab. It accommodates 24 students and permits individually paced instruction as well as allowing full-class instruction and performance through the headphone system. Using this lab, students can explore composition, orchestration, arranging, ear training, sight singing, improvisation and self-paced study of music history.

Instrumental Music

Most people know about the multi-talented High School marching band, the Renegade Regiment, with 10 Oklahoma Bandmasters Association state championships since 1985, two Fiesta Bowl Grand Masters Championships, a national championship in the 1996 WinterGuard International competition, two national percussion championships and three national colorguard championships. The Renegade Regiment also received an invitation to appear in the prestigious 2001 Pasadena Rose Bowl Parade. However, the Regiment is only part of the district's band program.

Visit the Renegade Regiment site - which also contains information about the band department, schedules, proper forms, information about color guards and alumni. NOTE: This site is not an official Union Public Schools website.

The Union band program begins at the sixth grade level with an annual enrollment of approximately 300 students. Band offerings include the marching band, concert bands, pep bands, jazz bands, membership in full orchestras, as well as colorguard and winterguard.

The Orchestra program has a reputation for excellence in the state, region and nation with numerous awards at each of these levels. Our students are well-represented in All-District and All-State orchestras, and students from Union Schools traditionally make up more than ten percent of the Tulsa Youth Symphony. Many students from the orchestra program have received scholarships at major universities throughout the nation as a result of their playing skills.

Drama

Union SchoolsDrama classes are another popular elective at the secondary level. Students can work to perfect their speaking and acting skills in this program which offers numerous public presentations each year. For many years, the High School Repertoire Theater has received state-wide recognition for their superb performances in the One-Act Play category.  Presentations by drama groups at all levels are know for their excellence.

Mass Media

The Mass Media program at Union is growing more popular every year. With support through the district's focus on technology, we anticipate a continued great future in this area. Students learn about yearbook, newspaper and broadcasting, as well as digital imaging and web design, combining art and technology. Some of the classes – such as web design – also incorporate business class elements with them and are even taught by business teachers.

YouthArts!

Union's Fine Arts Department proudly presents YouthArts!, an annual fine arts festival showcasing the creative works and talents of elementary and secondary students.

 

Fine Arts News

  • Mayfest Young Artist Award Winner Yebin Kim

    03.20.17



    continue reading

  • Union wins best overall ensemble at Green Country Jazz Festival

    03.08.17

    Union High School's first entry won best overall ensemble at the Green Country Jazz Festival on Monday. The Green Country Jazz Festival welcomed music students from across Northeastern Oklahoma to compete for honors as top jazz musicians and ensembles. continue reading

  • High school student named a Mayfest Young Artist winner

    02.27.17

    Union High school student Yebin Kim has been named a 2017 Mayfest Young Artist winner. Kim received top marks from a panel of independent jurors from the arts and education sectors of the Tulsa community and will be recognized at noon March 3 at the Hardesty Arts Center. continue reading

  • High School hosts Black Light Assembly

    02.23.17

    Photos from the Feb. 22 Black Light Assembly. The Black Light Assembly is held every other year in the spring at Union High School. continue reading

  • Alumni News: Wesam Keesh in new ABC TV show

    02.23.17

    Awkward alum Wesam Keesh has joined the series-regular cast of ABC’s legal drama pilot from Shonda Rhimes and Betsy Beers’ Shondaland and ABC Studios.

    continue reading

  • Union debate team makes national splash - & meets Twenty One Pilots

    02.21.17

    Union debaters, Evan Jones and Colton Smith, place 33rd out of over 200 debate teams at the Cal Invitational debate tournament in Berkeley, California last weekend.  Along the way they defeated a team ranked in the top 25 in the nation. ... Also, as a special surprise, on the way home, we ended up sitting next to popular artists, Twenty Øne Pilots, on the plane to back to Tulsa continue reading

  • WGI: Thank You

    02.20.17

    Thank you to all of our wonderful volunteers that came out to help us host Winter Guard International Tulsa Regional Championship on Saturday. continue reading

  • Board Report - February 13

    02.16.17

    A brief summary of the February Board of Education meeting has been posted which includes information on naming Union's new elementary, the new school calendar, endorsement of the Tulsa Chamber's legislative agenda, new pharmacy service, bond dollars at work, and special recognition of merit students and the state championship football team. continue reading

  • Update on the Union speech & debate team

    02.06.17

    Union’s speech and debate team has been very busy since the beginning of the semester.  Here is an update of the various competitions and awards that we have received since then.  Our post season starts in about a month and the coaching staff is very excited and optimistic about this year’s team. continue reading

  • Graceson Todd featured in Oklahoma Eaglle

    02.05.17



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