Updated: 1/11/21

Dear MCA Community,

In March of 2020 Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota made the decision to suspend face-to-face classes and large gathering for the near future due to the public health issue created by COVID-19.  As an affiliate program of Saint Mary’s University of MN, Minnesota Conservatory for the Arts was directed to follow suit to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 in our community. We are continually reassessing the situation and recommendations from SMUMN and public health officials. We successfully held a small number of in-person dance classes end of August- November 10th and plan to resume a limited number of in-person programs once again beginning Jan. 21, 2021. Additional virtual and self-paced programs will continue. Students participating in in-person classes will be required to follow our strict COVID Code of Conduct. Please click on the tabs below to explore our current programs and resources. Additionally all students and families will be required to sign this waiver within our registrations system.

This Winter we will have a variety of offerings ranging from in-person at Valencia Arts Center, in-person outside, self-paced low and no tech experiences, and virtual classes. Explore our online programs below or by clicking here.

Thank you for your understanding during these unexpected times. Please know that no matter what we will be here to offer you community and respite through arts.

Sincerely,

Jamie Schwaba

Managing Director

P.S. During this time, we invite you and your family to join us on social media for educational and entertaining MCA Moments created by our talented MCA community. Click on the social media icons below to take you to our pages. Check back often, as new content is being created daily. If you like what you see please consider making a donation to help support our instructors and MCA during this unexpected closure.

At-a-Glance Winter Dance Classes

Click here to see an at-a-glance view of classes including class fee & instructors.

Register Now!

Theatre Classes & Productions

Wizard of Oz

Prairie Fire Children’s Theatre will be back for the fifth visit to Minnesota Conservatory for the Arts. Area students ages 7-18 are invited to join the cast of “Wizard of Oz.” This original Prairie Fire Children's Theatre adaption is a musical production is the tale about an unjust prince, a gypsy curse, and a young girl who sees beyond appearances. Any student registered will be cast in this week-long production. No prior theatre experience is required. All cast members are required to participate in the audition process on April 22 to determine their role. Cast members MUST be available for rehearsals April 25-29, Monday- Friday, 4-8:15 p.m. and performances on Friday, April 29th, at 7 p.m. and Saturday, April 30th, at 2 p.m. Performances are in MCA’s Academy Theatre at the Valéncia Arts Center.

Professional actors/ directors from Prairie Fire Children's Theatre will play The Scarecrow and Wicked Witch but the rest of the cast will be filled in by Winona area students. Rolls filled by area youth include: Dorothy, the Tinman, the Lion, Toto, the Munchkins, Glinda, the Yellow Brick Road, the Monkeys, the Winkies, the Green Guard, the Traders of the Emerald City, the Wizard of Oz, Aunt Em & Uncle Henry. All students who register will be cast, but will participate in an audition process before being assigned a role. The fee to participate is $75 (need-based scholarships are available).

The community will be invited to the performances on April 29 at 7:00pm and April 30 at 2pm. Tickets are $8 for Adults and $5 for students (Tickets-on sale during MCA business hours April 25-29 and 1 hour prior to performances at the door. Cash or check only.)

All rehearsals and performances will follow MCA's COVID Code of Conduct.

MCA Main reACTion Improv Troupe

Ready to take your improv skills to the next level? If so, Main reACTion is for you! The Minnesota Conservatory for the Arts (MCA) is seeking creative quick-thinkers (ages 8-18) to join the Main reACTion Improv Troupe for the remainder of the 2021–2022 school-year. Main reACTion’s school-year troupe rehearses monthly and performs at 1–2 locations/events per semester. 

During auditions, actors and actresses can expect to participate in a variety of improv games. Those auditioning should also bring a calendar with any vacation, known school year activities or end of summer activities on it to note conflicts on the audition form. Troupe members will be selected based on their ability to think on their feet, make quick decisions, stage presence, ability to work with others, and variety of ideas. There is no fee to audition, but troupe members will be asked to pay $60 to participate for Jan.- May 2022, which covers all instruction for monthly rehearsals and a T-shirt.

Main ReACTion was established in June 2019 as an activity that was part of Artists on Main Street, a partnership between Winona Main Street, the Preservation Alliance of Minnesota, and Springboard for the Arts with support from the Bush Foundation. Thanks to the interest and success of the troupe will continue to provide a creative outlet to area youth and entertain community members of all ages. Auditions, rehearsals, and performances will follow MCA’s COVID Code of Conduct.

Auditions: Sunday, January 16th 4:00-6:00pm in the Academy Theatre at MCA’s home, the Valencia Arts Center (1164 W. 10th Street, Winona, MN)

Age: 8-18 years

Cost: $60 (covers whole year + t-shirt)

 

Private Music Lessons

student playing piano

We are excited to announce that we have shifted to offering private music lessons online and we are now accepting online registration for new students for most instruments. Now is the time to finally spend a little time with that piano that's been sadly sitting quietly in the corner or guitar that has been collecting dust in your basement! 

As with in-person lessons you may purchase lessons in a 4, 8, or 12 lesson package (ranging from $17-$19 per 30 minute lesson). We will be happy to shift lessons to in-person lessons once we can safely do so. No fees are paid until we connect you with an instructor. Learn more about MCA private lessons and instructors.

What you need need at your house to have a successful online lesson:

  • your instrument
  • a device with a camera and microphone (internal microphone should be fine unless you need to be far away from your device to be at your instrument.
  • optional: headphones or external speaker  
  • a wired connection (most reliable) or a strong wireless signal (around 1.5 Mbps for upload speed).  A 4G connection traditionally works as well.

Register Now!  

*In-person private lesson instruction will start to return slowly beginning May 2021. All students and instructors will be required to follow the MCA COVID Code of Conduct.

Creative Aging - Art Programs for 55+

Word Art - With Faux Calligraphy & Flourishes

Learn lettering and faux calligraphy techniques to apply to greeting and post cards from lines, heights, slants and strokes, to rhythm, spacing, width and pressure. Participants will receive class materials via mail, and by the end of the session create four unique greeting cards.
 
Class: Faux Calligraphy (virtual)
Dates/time: Tuesdays Jan. 25-Mar. 22, 2:30-3:30 via zoom
Instructor: Lisa Douglas
Ages: 55+
Cost: $24 (includes materials)
 
*This activity is made possible through a grant from Aroha Philanthropies, a non-profit arts organization working to improve quality of life through creative self-expression.
 

Virtual Art Classes

Word Art: Faux Calligraphy (virtual)

Learn lettering and faux calligraphy techniques to apply to greeting and post cards from lines, heights, slants and strokes, to rhythm, spacing, width and pressure. Participants will receive class materials via mail, and by the end of the session create four unique greeting cards. Students will receive a kit of materials including everything needed.*

 
Dates/Time: Tuesdays Jan. 25 - Mar. 22, 2:30-3:30pm
Ages: 55+
Instructor: Lisa Douglas
Location: Zoom
Fee: $24
 

Doodle Club (Ages 13+)

Wednesdays 7:30 PM

Dates: Jan.6- April 28

Instructor: Lisa Douglas

Fees: Free (students will need a pen (preferably a thin felt tip pen or marker), pencil, eraser, paper, and a round object for tracing such as a canning lid or tuna can.

*This activity is made possible by the voters of Minnesota through a grant from the Southeastern Minnesota Arts Council thanks to a legislative appropriation from the arts & cultural heritage fund, Aroha Philanthropies, and the Elizabeth Callender King Foundation.

Other opportunities to work with MCA through our amazing partners: (registration for these programs is handled by the partner and may require you to be a member of a specific group or live in a specific area, please click on the opportunity to learn more about the programs and our partners.

Caledonia Public Library- Art programs for all ages (ongoing)- Learn more about art programs at with Caledonia Public Library.

Elder Network- Exploring Oil Pastels (monthly on second Tuesdays, Feb. 9- May 11, 1:30-2:30)- Learn more about our oil pastel class in partnership with Elder Network.

Saint Mary's University Alumni (ongoing art programs)- Learn more about upcoming art SMUMN Alumni and Family Art classes.

Virtual Performances

Don't miss viewing these special premiere's in real time on both our MCA  Facebook Page or You Tube Channel.

 

 

Elder Network & MCA Partnership

Minnesota Conservatory for the Arts is thrilled to be partnering once again with Elder Network to offer an art workshop suitable for all family members, care givers, and care receivers to spend an hour together in their home creatively. The class will be exploring colored pencils and will be interactive and run live through ZOOM. No art experience with oil pastels is needed, however for those that participated in Elder Network and MCA's Intentional Doodle or oil pastel series will find this class a perfect next step in their artistic journey. Below are the class details.

Elder Network Winona County offers **WE WILL BE BACK SOON WITH NEW PROGRAMMING
 
Did you know that there are a multitude of special techniques that can be applied using colored pencils? Creating highlights, shading, blending, shapes, and more. Barb Parker with Elder Network and Lisa Douglas of the Minnesota Conservatory for the Arts (MCA) partner up for this real-time art class delivered over Zoom, so you can get creative right from the comfort of your own home. So get ready to color your way to calmness as you explore new art techniques and topics, while setting aside time to create and socialize.
 
No experience is necessary and all participants receive a kit with the needed supplies including a pack of 24 colored pencils, gel pens, paper, black fine liner, and more.
 
This will be an 8 session series, over Zoom, every other Tuesday from 2:30PM-3:30PM. The first class in on August 3, 2021 and the last class will be November 9, 2021.
 
The cost for the series is $24.00 and this includes the price of the kit.
 
To Register: Please contact Barb Parker at Elder Network to sign up for the class at either (507) 452-0850 or barbp@elder-network.org.
Please mail or drop off your $24.00 to Elder Network, 902 E. Second Street, Suite 321, Winona, MN 55987 before July 15th.
Funding for this class is provided through grant money from the Winona Community Foundation.

About Elder Network: 

Elder Network was founded in 1988 in Rochester Minnesota. Their mission is “Individuals impacted by the limiting effects of aging have an optimal quality of life.” As a are a local 501c3 nonprofit, they serve primarily three counties in Southeast Minnesota; Olmsted, Wabasha and Winona. However, their educational offerings and support groups are open to anyone that would like to attend. Elder Network has developed seven non-medical programs that support seniors and their caregivers. We are a well-respected organization providing non-medical elder care which isn’t provided by other organizations doing similar services. They are proud that to network with other organizations so that we are able to support seniors and their caregivers through service or referral. Elder Network's outreach extends to all regardless of elder traditions, cultures or religions. These programs include Senior Advocacy, Education & Support, Companion Services, Respite Care In-Home, Peer Support, Friendly Visitors, and Transportation.

Partnership with Caledonia Public Library for Houston County Residents

Arts programs in collaboration with the Caledonia Public Library

Arts Opportunities for All Houston County Residents 

The Caledonia Public Library and Minnesota Conservatory for the Arts, are excited to announce a a variety of virtual and self-paced programming for both youth and adults. Programs will include virtual storytimes, valentine creation, Doodle & Relax sessions and Unsolved Art Adventures. These programs have been created to encourage creativity, inspire learning, and foster community. All of these events are FREE to all. Accompanying kits are available to Houston County residents through the Caledonia Public Library.  For more information visit the Caledonia Public Library Facebook Page or Caledonia Public Library YouTube Page.