Welcome to Frazier Mountain FOCUS Central
FOCUS Central has been serving and bringing the arts to the mountain community youth since 2002. We have watched many of those students grow up; and of course, we have had the pleasure of meeting the children of the next up and coming families. The number of classes, activities, partnerships, and events FOCUS has brought to our youth and community over the years is a testament to the tremendous demand for the arts.
We have provided classes in the fine arts of drawing, painting and ceramics, and the performing arts including drama, guitar, piano, drums, and singing. We have offered language arts such as Spanish and American Sign Language and Digital arts. During the 2013-2014 school year, Principal Sara Haflich invited FOCUS to bring the Arts back into the high school with after-school programs in drama, guitar, video editing, and the industrial arts of set design and fashion design along with sewing. All of which culminated into a theatrical production of You Can’t Take It With You.
Over the years we have had the privilege of wonderful sponsors from the business community, individuals and several organizations, most notably Tejon Ranch, Ace Hardware, Dr. Porazik, and Arcero Wineries. Organizations who generously support FOCUS activities include Boys & Girls Club, Kern County Library Frazier Park Branch, Mountain Communities Chamber of Commerce and Mountain Communities Family Resource Center. We have provided scholarships for students with support from the California Arts Council, Youth Connection, Family Resource Center, MARC, Name Your Price Thrift Store, and Reflexion47 Church. MARC sponsored the Frazier Mountain Community Band with John Van Houten as the director for two years. We were honored to help launch the Drama productions at the high school with Kat Fair and Mountain Shakespeare with Peter Kjenaas.
As charter schools grew in California, FOCUS became vendors with Valley Oaks Charter School, Inspire Charter School, Albert Einstein Charter, Golden Valley Charter School, SCV iLead Charter School, and Sky Mountain Charter School. Partnerships have flourished with Gorman, Maricopa and El Tejon School Districts as well.
Ten years of Summer Art Camps have introduced 15 art forms annually, taught by different artists. We have been awarded several grants from Kern Arts Foundation, the Kern Arts Council, the Kern Board of Trade, and most recently, the California Arts Council. We have partnered with Gorman School on the Arts Ed Collective Advancement Grant to bring singing/ songwriting, ceramics, and percussion classes to their students for 2017/2018 school year, and are planning the curriculum for the fall including drama and ceramics II.
Over the years our journey has produced 2 fashion competitions, two Holiday Christmas shows, and the Nutcracker directed by Mary Miller, and nearly a dozen theatrical productions including a Shakespeare Festival with Peter Kjenaas in North Hollywood. We had 4 Paradiso Talent Competitions with judges from the entertainment community awarding cash prizes. We have coordinated field trips to L.A. Fashion Design Institute, the Fabric District and Wind Wolves Preserve. In 2017, we celebrated 15 years and were honored by the Frazier Park Chamber of Commerce. We received four certificates of special recognition from: U.S. Congressman Kevin McCarthy, Vince Fong Assembly Member 34th District, Jean Fuller State Senator 16th District,
and the Kern County Board of Supervisors.
But our greatest success has been the teachers that have worked tirelessly over the past fifteen years: Richard Schwagerl, Gigi Nommensen, Allie Jo Thomas, Kate Donahue, Mary Pivetti, and myself, Teresa LeGault. We like to boast of past teachers: Steve Hill, Karen Maxwell, Mary Miller, Kathy Stokes, Peter Kjenaas, Michelle Morain, Sarah-Jane Owens, Robin Smith, Bari Moulin, Mark Moulin, and Shanene Laudenberg. We welcome the new teachers this year, including Brendan Coyle, Jody Frank, and Ross Canton.
We will always be grateful to the churches that have opened their doors to host our classes and/or events: Reflexion47 Church, Calvary Chapel Church, FMCC, Assembly of God, and Shepherd of the Mountains Lutheran Church along with the community facilities that Kern County has generously allowed us to use.
All of this effort and work is for the kids of our mountain and that magic time when you see a young person discovering their abilities and actually see them grow and develop into an artist.
At FOCUS Central we are crazy about the arts. With that passion comes hours of hard work by our grant writer/Co-founder, Mary Pivetti and Board members: Gigi Nommensen as Vice President/Secretary and Linda Sheldon, Treasurer. There is still much to do. I hope you will get as excited as we are and share in our vision.
President and Founder
Frazier Mountain FOCUS Central, Inc.