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Writing and other creative arts

New Orleans Center for Creative Arts, or NOCCA, is a professional arts training center for secondary school-age children. NOCCA is located in New Orleans, Louisiana. The school offers instruction in creative writing, dance, media arts, music, theatre arts, and visual arts, with a summer culinary arts program. It provides a summer program for individuals seeking to broaden their knowledge through the discipline of their choice, or to earn additional credit before the school year begins. It also provides a full year course that begins in the Fall, and extends through June, in which the students study half of the day at their core school, and spend the remainder of the day at NOCCA, under the supervision of their instructors.

NOCCA was founded in 1973. The school was housed for many years in an old elementary school building located in Uptown New Orleans. In 2000, the school moved to a newly-built campus located in the Faubourg Marigny neighborhood.

NOCCA has a prominent position in art schools throughout the United States and around the world. Every year, 90-95% percent of those graduating from NOCCA move on to colleges, many of the students continuing their education in the arts. Several world-class artists have graduated from NOCCA. Some famous alumni include Harry Connick Jr., Terence Blanchard, Nicholas Payton, the Marsalis brothers, Trombone Shorty, Jonathan Batiste, Anthony Mackie, and Wendell Pierce.

Admission to NOCCA is by audition only. Although it is recommended that the students maintain a strong GPA upon auditioning, skill and level of artistry present the largest portion of acceptance. Most of the students study half-time at a conventional academic secondary school in New Orleans or in the surrounding parishes, and train the rest of the time in one of the programs offered by NOCCA.

While the facilities experienced some wind and rain damage from Hurricane Katrina in 2005, NOCCA’s location on the high ground of the Faubourg Marigny saved it from the flooding that other parts of New Orleans experienced (see Effect of Hurricane Katrina on New Orleans). After Hurricane Katrina, several students were placed temporarily at the High School for Performing and Visual Arts in Houston, TX, the Coronado School of the Arts in San Diego, California, and other arts schools for high school students around the country.


The music program includes classical, jazz and vocal. The jazz program was recently headed by noted New Orleans clarinetist Alvin Batiste before his death; the original head of the jazz department was renowned pianist Ellis Marsalis (father of the musicians and producers Branford, Wynton and Delfeayo). The classical vocal program centers on operatic-style singing, and is headed by Phyllis Treigle; the original vocal department head was Lorraine Alfaro. Bert Braud was the original classical music head (from which Wynton Marsalis was an early graduate); one of the original classical graduates was award-winning pianist and composer Moses Hogan (now deceased). Currently, the classical instrumental program is headed by cellist, Dr. Jee Yeoun Ko and emphasizes on chamber music along with personalized one-on-one training.

The creative writing program includes study in poetry, short fiction, creative nonfiction, and a variety of other works. Students study poetry and literature in depth, and produce a literary magazine each year, Umbra.

The theatre arts program includes drama, musical theatre and theatre design. The Drama department is taught by Janet Shea, Silas Cooper, and Jason Kirkpatrick.

The media arts department includes instruction in film/video arts taught by Paul Werner and Courtney Egan and audio engineering and record production taught by Grammy winning engineer

The NOCCA campus as of 2008.


From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia : Writing and other creative arts
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