Welcome to State of the Art, where we celebrate all of the phenomenal accomplishments of our students, alumni, faculty, and staff. Congratulations to all, and don't forget to submit your accomplishments!

To submit a success story to be featured in State of the Art, please fill out the accomplishment submission form here.

To view additional accomplishments by month or by conservatory, please visit this page.

  • Melody Chang won the  2021 Dragon Challenge from the Dragon Kim Foundation for her project “Let’s Learn about Public Health!”
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    Melody Chang won the 2021 Dragon Challenge from the Dragon Kim Foundation for her project “Let’s Learn about Public Health!”
    Melody Chang (IM, ‘22) won the prestigious 2021 Dragon Challenge from the Dragon Kim Foundation for her project “Let’s Learn about Public Health!” Her project entailed writing a book for children in grades 3-6, in an effort to educate them about modern concepts of public health. She also ran a community summer camp to deliver her curriculum to 120 children. Through the Dragon Kim Foundation, she was awarded $5,000 to translate her book into other languages, develop a curriculum to teach her book in elementary schools, and advocate at the state level for her book and curriculum to be taught in more school districts. To read more about Melody’s project, please visit https://bit.ly/3uIEpQx
  • Caitlyn Mason's original play, Fluent Love, placed in the Kennedy Center's Annual VSA Playwright Discovery Award Competition
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    Caitlyn Mason's original play, Fluent Love, placed in the Kennedy Center's Annual VSA Playwright Discovery Award Competition
    Caitlyn Mason's (CW, ‘23) original play, Fluent Love, placed in the top eight entries in the Kennedy Center's Annual VSA Playwright Discovery Award Competition. The awards highlight the experiences of students with disabilities.
  • Clara Choi was recognized as one of the top 30 finalists selected to compete in the Broadcom MASTERS competition
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    Clara Choi was recognized as one of the top 30 finalists selected to compete in the Broadcom MASTERS competition
    Clara Choi (CMD, ‘25) was recognized as one of the top 30 finalists selected to compete in the Broadcom MASTERS competition. Broadcom MASTERS, the nation's premier STEM competition, seeks to inspire the young scientists, engineers, and innovators who will solve the complex challenges of the future. Clara will compete for over $100,000 in experiential awards and prizes.
  • Ariyah Brown (ACT, ‘21) received second place in the inaugural OC Youth Poet Laureate competition
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    Ariyah Brown (ACT, ‘21) received second place in the inaugural OC Youth Poet Laureate competition
    Ariyah Brown (ACT, ‘21) received second place in the inaugural OC Youth Poet Laureate competition. The OC Poet Laureate program celebrates and honors local poets who exhibit a commitment to not just artistic excellence, but also to civic engagement, youth leadership, and social justice.
  • Anjal Jain won the National Talk and Mend Asian American Storytelling Competition
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    Anjal Jain won the National Talk and Mend Asian American Storytelling Competition
    Anjal Jain (CV, ‘22) won the National Talk and Mend Asian American Storytelling Competition. Anjal filmed, directed, and edited a short film depicting the struggles of the South Asian community in the United States. This film offered potential solutions to combating racial prejudice and bridged the gap between racial communities. Anjal also won the $2,000 Outstanding High School Project award in the Lowell Milken Center for Unsung Heroes’ Discovery Award competition for her project “From Asylums to Institutions: Samuel Gridley Howe's Unsung Perpetuation of Anti-Ableism.”
  • Andy Choi's debut novel, "Slow Hot," has been published by Schism Press
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    Andy Choi's debut novel, "Slow Hot," has been published by Schism Press
    Andy Choi's (CW, ‘22) debut novel, "Slow Hot," has been published by Schism Press. Set in a near-distant, near-dystopian world where everyone has alphanumeric names and chip implants are commonplace, "Slow Hot" explores the main character’s journey through an over-commercialized world and their longing to connect with a Korea of the past.
  • Bianca Lozano, Fatima Oregon, and Sammy Perez helped inspire children through Mexican folk dancing
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    Bianca Lozano, Fatima Oregon, and Sammy Perez helped inspire children through Mexican folk dancing
    Bianca Lozano (BF, ‘21), Fatima Oregon (BF), and Sammy Perez (BF, ‘21) were a part of a team that helped inspire children through Mexican folk dancing at Garden Grove Methodist Church. They taught folklórico to more than 50 kids through their program, titled Sembrando Dahlias, which was made possible by funding from the Dragon Kim Foundation. To read more about their story, please visit: https://bit.ly/3uPS8Fl
  • Aryan Simhadri booked the role of Walter in the new Broadway musical Trevor
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    Aryan Simhadri booked the role of Walter in the new Broadway musical Trevor
    Aryan Simhadri (ACT, ‘24) booked the role of Walter in the new Broadway musical Trevor, scheduled to premiere on Stage 42 this fall.
  • Estella Sky Keyoung was accepted into the Study of Exceptional Talent program at Johns Hopkins University
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    Estella Sky Keyoung was accepted into the Study of Exceptional Talent program at Johns Hopkins University
    Estella Sky Keyoung (CV, ‘25) was accepted into the Study of Exceptional Talent (SET) program at Johns Hopkins University. This selective program identifies and provides special services to gifted youth.
  • Anirudh Kota was one of three winners of the Lockdown Script Writing Contest
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    Anirudh Kota was one of three winners of the Lockdown Script Writing Contest
    Anirudh Kota (FTV, ‘22) was one of three winners of the Lockdown Script Writing Contest sponsored by Notre Dame High School and the Dr. Barbara Seniors Harkins Foundation.
  • Keira Base named the Division 6 Young Marine of the Year
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    Keira Base named the Division 6 Young Marine of the Year
    Keira Base (CV, ‘22) was named the Division 6 Young Marine of the Year. Representing eight states on the west coast, she was selected to travel to other units throughout the division to lead, motivate, and serve as a role model for other young marines.
  • Film & Television Conservatory students and alumni were selected to screen their films at this year’s All-American High School Film Festival
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    Film & Television Conservatory students and alumni were selected to screen their films at this year’s All-American High School Film Festival
    The following Film & Television Conservatory students and alumni were selected to screen their films at this year’s All-American High School Film Festival in New York City.

    Ethan Chu (FTV, ‘21) – “By Your Side”, “Pho”
    Ren Collantes (FTV, ‘21) – “Dreams of Ambivalence”
    Maggie Ding (FTV, ‘22) – “Magdalena”
    Noah Frech (FTV, ‘21) – “Run Away”
    Ava Gaskins (FTV, ‘22) – “Ours to Yours”, “The Corpse in the Mirror”
    Kenneth Ha (FTV, ‘25) – “A Quiet Game”
    Nona Nishigawara (FTV, ‘22) – “Dobu”
    Allee Stone (FTV, ‘20) – “Tess and Dodi”
    Nolan Hieu Trifunovic (FTV, ‘21) – “The Other”, “Know Better”
    Elinor Weber (FTV, ‘21) – “The Omega”
  • Joy Baik’s illustration work was published in a book by Lisa Baker.
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    Joy Baik’s illustration work was published in a book by Lisa Baker.
    Joy Baik’s (VA, ‘19) illustration work was published in the book "In All of Your Days Have You Seen the Ways an Animal Plays an Instrument?" by Lisa Baker.
  • OCSA students performed in the production of "Spring Awakening"
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    OCSA students performed in the production of "Spring Awakening"
    The following students performed in a Braver Players Musical Theater Foundation production of "Spring Awakening."

    Sadie Braverman (ACT, ‘23)
    Mya Gonzales (ACT, ‘23)
    Collin Heinrich (ACT, ‘23)
    Zach Hoffman (ACT, ‘22)
    Lauren Williams (ACT, ‘22)
  • Ava Kuntz won first place at the National Association of Teachers of Singing (NATS) National Competition
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    Ava Kuntz won first place at the National Association of Teachers of Singing (NATS) National Competition
    Ava Kuntz (CV, ‘21) won first place at the National Association of Teachers of Singing (NATS) National Competition in the Musical Theater Competition. Her award-winning performance was “Me and the Sky” from Come From Away by Sankoff & Hein.
  • Emilia Djordjevic won first place at the Satori Summer Music Festival
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    Emilia Djordjevic won first place at the Satori Summer Music Festival
    Emilia Djordjevic (IM, ‘23) won first place in the Piano Open Category in the Satori Summer Music Festival.
  • Sarah Parigela and Shayna Kaplan started a nonprofit organization to teach music to OC children
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    Sarah Parigela and Shayna Kaplan started a nonprofit organization to teach music to OC children
    Sarah Parigela (IM, ‘23) and Shayna Kaplan (IM, ‘23) started a nonprofit organization, called Strike a Chord, to teach music to underserved children in Orange County. The organization aims to provide everyone with the opportunity to flourish through the power of music with performances and instrument donations.
  • OCSA students, faculty and alumni were recognized for their accomplishments at the 2021 Embassy Ballroom Championships
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    OCSA students, faculty and alumni were recognized for their accomplishments at the 2021 Embassy Ballroom Championships
    The following students and alumni, along with faculty members Briana and Kris Suakjian, were recognized for their accomplishments at the 2021 Embassy Ballroom Championships.

    Jacqueline Artinian (BR, ‘22)
    Gabriel Cho (BR, ‘24)
    Presley Herthel (BR, ‘26)
    Jack Hillebrecht (BR, ‘26)
    Lucas McCollum-VanHoosear (BR, ‘22)
    Aurelia Philmore (BR, ‘24)
    Marina Pitt (BR, ‘26)
    Isaac Reynoso (BR, ‘20)
    Kaylee Tran (BR, ‘27)
    Cynthia Zhang (BR, ‘27)
  • OCSA students participate in the short film "Musical Theater Camp 3"
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    OCSA students participate in the short film "Musical Theater Camp 3"
    The following students participated in the short film “Musical Theater Camp 3” produced by Braver Players Musical Theater Foundation.


    Sadie Braverman (ACT, ‘23)
    Colin Daniels (ACT, ‘22)
    Mya Gonzales (ACT, ‘23)
    Zach Hoffman (ACT, ‘22)
    Jack Ireland (ACT, ‘25)
    Chase Johnson (ACT, ‘26)
    Caleb Malis (IA, ‘23)
    Madeline Rosenberg (ACT, ‘26)
    Leilani Steiner (ACT, ‘25)
  • Sophia Kang performed in "Once on This Island Jr." as the lead role
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    Sophia Kang performed in "Once on This Island Jr." as the lead role
    Sophia Kang (PD, ‘24) performed in the Arts & Learning Conservatory’s production of "Once on This Island Jr." in the lead role of Asaka, Mother of Earth. She also won first place at the 2021 Musical Arts Competition of Orange County in the Musical Theater category.
  • OCSA has been ranked by Niche as the #1 Best Charter High School in California for the third year in a row
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    OCSA has been ranked by Niche as the #1 Best Charter High School in California for the third year in a row
    Orange County School of the Arts (OCSA) has been ranked by Niche as the #1 Best Charter High School in California for the third year in a row, as well as the #6 Best Charter High School in America for 2022! We would like to express our gratitude to all the students, teachers, and staff who continue to make OCSA an exceptional institution. To view all rankings for OCSA, please visit: https://bit.ly/3D8R02u
  • Haven Aram Hanson was cast in the lead role of Little Shop of Horrors
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    Haven Aram Hanson was cast in the lead role of Little Shop of Horrors
    Haven Aram Hanson (PD, ‘23) was cast in the lead role of Seymour in Yorba Linda Spotlight Theater's production of "Little Shop of Horrors." He also provided wig and makeup design, in addition to creating specialty props for the show.
  • Paige Oden, Director of the Visual Arts Conservatory, has been named the 2021 Woman of the Year
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    Paige Oden, Director of the Visual Arts Conservatory, has been named the 2021 Woman of the Year
    Paige Oden, Director of the Visual Arts Conservatory, has been named the 2021 Woman of the Year by Congressman Lou Correa and the 46th California Congressional District. This award honors outstanding women who exemplify ethical leadership and a commitment to making a positive impact in the community.
  • Josh Wood, Director of the Creative Writing Conservatory, had his flash science fiction story, Space & Aces, published in the online magazine 365 Tomorrows
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    Josh Wood, Director of the Creative Writing Conservatory, had his flash science fiction story, Space & Aces, published in the online magazine 365 Tomorrows
    Josh Wood, Director of the Creative Writing Conservatory, had his flash science fiction story, "Space & Aces," published in the online magazine 365 Tomorrows.
  • Sonali Dhanidina was chosen to perform her spoken word piece at Breaking Bias
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    Sonali Dhanidina was chosen to perform her spoken word piece at Breaking Bias
    Sonali Dhanidina (IA, ‘25) was chosen to perform her spoken word piece “Silent Colors” at Breaking Bias, the annual spotlight event for NewGround, which empowers Jewish and Muslim change-makers with the skills, resources, and relationships needed to improve Muslim-Jewish relations and strengthen cooperation on issues of shared concern.
  • Creative Writing Instructor Tira Palmquist had an online reading with the Oregon Shakespeare Festival
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    Creative Writing Instructor Tira Palmquist had an online reading with the Oregon Shakespeare Festival
    Creative Writing Instructor Tira Palmquist's newest play, "King Margaret," had an online reading with the Oregon Shakespeare Festival.
  • Soren Almeida displayed and sold his photography at Art-A-Fair
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    Soren Almeida displayed and sold his photography at Art-A-Fair
    Soren Almeida (FTV, ‘22) displayed and sold his photography as a student artist at Art-A-Fair in Laguna Beach. To read more about the student artist program, please click here: https://bit.ly/3a6Jhpe
  • Wyatt Beckley attended the Berklee College of Music’s Summer Aspire program
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    Wyatt Beckley attended the Berklee College of Music’s Summer Aspire program
    Wyatt Beckley (PM, ‘22) attended the Berklee College of Music’s Summer Aspire program and was selected as a guitarist in the All-Star Funk-Fusion Band.
  • OCSA's Eye Matter club hosted a national online summer camp for visually impaired children
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    OCSA's Eye Matter club hosted a national online summer camp for visually impaired children
    The following students from OCSA’s Eye Matter club hosted a national online summer camp for visually impaired children, utilizing a $5,000 grant from the Anekant Community Foundation. Over the course of five weeks, they focused on creating a supportive community and fostering a sense of belonging, all while combating ableism within the arts. To view their program highlights video, please click here: https://bit.ly/3uGuevU

    Ritika Asher (BCD, ‘23)
    Alex Breschini (CV, ‘22)
    Cece Fanelli (PD, ‘22) - Vice President
    Stella Goodman (CV, ‘23)
    Anjal Jain (CV, ‘22) - President
    Delaney Manna (PD, ‘23)
    Finley Sasena (BCD, ‘23)
    Hailey Somphone (CV, ‘22)