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    Better Together: Ben Lippen Fine Arts

    Ben Lippen Fine Arts! The 2019–2020 academic year saw tremendous growth in several programs across the department. In the Visual Art Program, the completion of the $5.5M Arts & Science Center provided students with a state-of-the-art studio and allowed students to explore creative methods in Drawing, 2-D Art & Design, and 3-D Art & Design. Student work was featured at the South Carolina State Fair and in the SCISA Art Show, with multiple students earning ribbons for their creations.
    In the Choral Program, Ben Lippen renovated its Choir Studio and welcomed over 70 students to the curricular program—the highest program enrollment in recent years! Stemming from increased student interest, Ben Lippen launched
    its first a cappella group composed entirely of male students. With members representing grades 7–12, Varsity Men’s
    A Cappella stunned the audience with their debut performance at the 2020
    State of the School Address. Building on the success of this group, Ben Lippen is planning to launch Varsity Women’s A Cappella in Fall 2020.
    Ben Lippen’s Guitar Program has—once again—been recognized at the national level. Guitar teacher, Chris Essig, was
    featured in the 2019 article, Guitar Class in 50 States, published by the National Association for Music Education. With Mr. Essig’s award-winning instruction,
    the Beginning Guitar Ensemble and the Advanced Guitar Ensemble both received superior ratings at the SCISA Music Festival. Additionally, four individual students were selected to the South Carolina All State Guitar Ensemble, bringing Ben Lippen’s total to 16 students over the past two years. Two students from the Honors Bluegrass Band were selected for additional scholarships
    from the South Carolina Bluegrass and Traditional Music Association.
    The Ben Lippen Band is wildly popular among the student body. With the addition of multiple performance-based classes, the program has doubled in
    size over the past two years. Students
    in the program have brought Band into the center of Ben Lippen culture by presenting fun performances at football games, at pep rallies, and yes—even in the cafeteria!
    The growth doesn’t stop with the music programs, however, as Ben Lippen’s 2019 production of Annie included 86 students in the cast and crew. With the premiere of Madagascar Jr. in Fall 2020, Ben Lippen will inaugurate an ambitious season, featuring three full-length musicals at the lower school, middle school, and high
    school levels. As more students gain skills through participation in theater, Ben Lippen will continue to develop a strong culture of well-rounded students and superb school spirit.
    The philosophy behind this growth is simple—Ben Lippen Fine Arts personifies the motto, Better Together. “Better” signifies our commitment to creating music, theater, and art of the highest quality for the glory of God. We teach
    our students that they are creators who reflect the ultimate Creator, and as a result, we seek to reflect Him well in
    our work. We practice, grow, and invest because we serve a glorious God. At
    the same time, “Together” reflects our department’s value of community. We teach our students that their music, art, and theater are not simply for themselves. Rather, these products are gifts to be given away in service to those around them.
    We are thankful for God’s blessing on Ben Lippen Fine Arts. If you are committed
    to creating music, theater, and art of the highest quality, and want to invest in the next generation of creators for the glory of God, we would love to connect with you. Visit to view donation membership levels, or email BLS Fine Arts Director, Taylor Nelson, at