The Ellen C. Bruner Professional Performing Artist Residency Program
Ellie Bruner founded the Wildwood Artist Series in 1990 to encourage an appreciation of the fine arts and to support musical education in our community. Under her leadership, WAS initiated the Wildwood Artist Series Professional Performing Artist Residency Program which funds extended residencies by professional performing artists (clinicians, composers, arrangers and artists of various cultural backgrounds) to work closely with students in the Mahtomedi school district. WAS is currently able to offer one residency per year that rotates around the four schools. Ultimately, we would like to be able to provide at least one residency experience for each student during their school career.
Here is the list of talented individuals who have enriched our music programs thus far:
- 2016-2017 Ross Sutter at Wildwood Elementary
- 2017-2018 J.D. Steele at OH Anderson Elementary
- 2018-2019 Dr. Scott Agster with Mahtomedi Middle
and High School Bands
- 2019-2020 Kyle Pederson with Mahtomedi Middle
And High School Choirs
- 2020-2021 James Hersch at Wildwood Elementary
- 2021-2022 Peter Mayer at OH Anderson Elementary
- 2022-2023 Sowah Mensah Mahtomedi Middle
- 2023-2024 TBA - Mahtomedi High School
Artist Residency Program
After 30+ years of leading the Wildwood Artist Series, Ellen (Ellie) C. Bruner stepped down from her management role. It is the distinct honor and pleasure for the new administration to rename the Wildwood Artist Series Professional Performing Artist Residency Program to the Ellen C. Bruner Professional Performing Artist Residency Program. If you are interested in donating to the Ellen C. Bruner fund in honor of Ellie Bruner's contributions to WAS and to support this ongoing program, click here.
Peter Mayer explained to 3rd – 5th grade students at OH Anderson School how he composes his songs and about the guitar. Each residency concludes with a concert for the public which is videotaped and put into a media library for all teachers to access. Donations to the above initiatives are gratefully accepted.
After a little break for COVID-19
James Hersch also led K-2 students at Wildwood School to write the lyrics and melodies to themes from their favorite children’s books.
Kyle Pederson encouraged Middle and High School Choir students to see themselves as composers and lyricists as they composed their own pieces of choral music.
Dr. Scott Agster worked with Middle and High School Band students, focusing on learning musicianship and improvisational skills.
JD Steele motivated 3rd – 5th grade students to find their “inner voice” and gave them an understanding of Black Gospel Choral style and culture.
WAS initiated the Wildwood Artist Series Professional Performing Artist Residency Program which funds extended residencies by professional performing artists (clinicians, composers, arrangers and artists of various cultural backgrounds) who work closely with students in each of the four District 832 schools. In 2016 students at Wildwood Elementary School learned Swedish and American folk songs and dances under the tutelage of Ross Sutter.
WAS recognizes the ability to teach, intrigue, and transform through the power of the performing arts, and we welcome you to join us as we embark on this journey that is the Wildwood Artist Series. If you would like to become a member of the committee that plans each season's events please contact the WAS President Julie Molitor at [email protected]
Thank you! The Wildwood Artist Series