The Orange County High School of the Arts has expanded its arts program and will offer training in playwriting and screenwriting, along with six other courses, starting in September.
Courses in video and television production, choral and opera singing and intermediate and advanced piano will also be offered, in addition to the regular classes on dance, music and theater, according to Executive Director Ralph Opacic.
The school opened six years ago to provide training to high school-age students from Orange County and southern Los Angeles County seeking careers in the arts, Opacic said.
The instructors are professional artists who give students actual working knowledge of the entertainment industry, he said.
"Ours is the only program in Orange County that provides young artists the opportunity to learn under professional actors, singers, choreographers, artists and directors," Opacic said.
To be accepted to the tuition-free courses, Opacic said, students must pass either a so-called portfolio review or audition. Applications are currently available; auditions started in April and will end this month.
Opacic said the playwriting and screenwriting course is intended to develop writers for the stage as well as film and television. Students will also learn how to create and market plays, teleplays and screenplays.
In video and television production, students will cover the school's arts events and performances and produce a television series. Advanced students will produce dramas, documentaries and variety programs on film, Opacic said.
Choral and opera students will receive vocal training in classical music and opera, he said. Piano lessons in three levels, including advanced, will be offered in the fall, he said.
"These new programs will enrich the lives of our future artists and performers," Opacic said.