The Edmond Sun

July 5, 2013

VIDEO: Edmond students refine talents at Quartz Mountain


Special to The Sun

EDMOND — The Oklahoma Arts Institute at Quartz Mountain annually offers an arts education experience like no other program for youth in the state. High school age students audition and apply for one of the coveted spots for an intensive arts academy experience led by nationally known instructors. Instructors have included winners of the Pulitzer Prize and the Academy, Emmy, Grammy and Tony awards. The private, nonprofit organization has offered multidisciplinary arts experiences to students since 1978 at the Quartz Mountain Arts and Conference Center in Lone Wolf. The two-week residential academy immerses students in the study of their chosen field of visual, literary or performing arts. This summer 49 youth from the Edmond area were invited to attend. Read a little about each student in this ongoing feature:



Candace Osterhout

Age 17, junior at Crossings Christian School

Discipline: Creative Writing, 2nd year



Q: Why did you want to attend OSAI this year?

A: I wanted to attend OSAI because I went last year. I love being able to submerse myself in the arts, and the atmosphere is perfect for artistic development.

Q: What do you plan on gaining from this experience?

A: Last year, I learned and grew so much in my art, and I picked up techniques from the other artists staying at Quartz Mountain. This year, I hope to learn and thrive even more.

Q: What are you looking forward to at OSAI?

A: I’m looking forward to seeing and climbing the mountains again! Out of everything at Quartz Mountain, I have most missed the nature and the mountains. There is something spectacular about being surrounded on all sides by the Quartz Mountain.

Q: As an artist, where do you see yourself in 10 years?

A: In 10 years, I see myself with several books published (hopefully), and I’d like to be on my way to winning several book awards. I have high expectations for myself and my art in the future.

Q: What got you started in the arts?

A: In elementary and middle school, I would play “imagination games” with my friends. As I got older, I wanted to remember what it was like to play these games, so I started writing them down. From there, writing became my passion.



Dana Wilson

Age 16, homeschooled

Discipline: Orchestra, Harp, 1st year



Q: Why did you want to attend OSAI this year?

A: To have the opportunity to grow as an artist and musician.

Q: What do you plan on gaining from this experience?

A: I hope to refine my vision of my future as a harpist and to be strengthened and sharpened musically by the faculty, staff and my fellow students.

Q: What are you looking forward to at OSAI?

A: I enjoy spending time with artistically- and musically-minded people.

Q: As an artist, where do you see yourself in 10 years?

A: In 10 years, I plan to be a working solo and orchestral harpist.

Q: What got you started in the arts?

A: My aunt is a harpist, and I began asking to learn to play harp when I was 5 years old. When I was 8, I began my study of the harp.



Elizabeth Lyons

Age 16, junior at Edmond North High School

Discipline: Drawing and Painting, 3rd year



Q: Why did you want to attend OSAI this year?

A: I had heard a lot about OSAI from friends in art class and it seemed like something worth looking into. After learning more about it, I felt like this would be a great challenge for me, and one that hopefully would result not only in a better understanding of the arts, but also myself.

Q: What do you plan on gaining from this experience?

A: At OSAI I hope to learn and grow as an artist through exposure to different techniques and styles and through the inspiration created by other artist’s enthusiasm and the surrounding natural setting.

Q: What are you looking forward to at OSAI?

A: I am especially looking forward to meeting young people who share the same appreciation I do for beauty in the arts. I hope this experience will result in new and lasting friendships that encourage enthusiasm and artistic adventure.

Q: As an artist, where do you see yourself in 10 years?

A: In 10 years, at the very least I hope to still be regularly expressing myself creatively, whether that will be done professionally or just as a hobby, only time can tell.

Q: What got you started in the arts?

A: I always enjoyed making messes as a little kid (still do), and for some reason whenever I did this using crayons or paints on paper, I got a much better reaction from my parents.