Fine Arts Society of Sarasota Hits Million Dollar Milestone

The Fine Arts Society of Sarasota puts up big numbers for student scholarships.

By Kay Kipling May 30, 2017

1 group of awarded students a46sve

Back row: Joshua Galindo, Zoe Verbil, Joshua Guaita, David J. Geiger, Zachary Herman, Austin B. Canon, Elijah Schildkraut, Abigal Hodgson, Madison T. Miller, Melanie Gasparoni.

Front row: Emily Cain, Marissa Brotz, Maya O'Day, Haley Faye Rosenthal, Skyler Miller, Sommer Altier


The recent announcement that the Fine Arts Society of Sarasota was awarding scholarships to 19 students this year was more than music to the recipients’ ears. It also means the society, established in 1969, has reached a significant number in money granted to Sarasota County students majoring in the arts in college: $1 million, or, to be more exact, $1,011,760.

That milestone benefits not only the individual students, but Sarasota County’s reputation as an arts community. Scholarship recipients pursue their education in all areas of the arts—painting, dance, musical theater, classical piano, composing, graphic arts, jewelry making and performance on a variety of instruments—and they are bound to carry their talents and skills to a wider audience.

Joshua guaita performing gzkean

Joshua Guaita performs at the awards ceremony


This year, the society raised $52,500 for fine arts scholars, and the scholarship winners demonstrated their performance or visual art skills at a luncheon ceremony at the Bird Key Yacht Club. The winners are:

For musical theater, Zoe Verbil, Haley Faye Rosenthal and Zachary Herman; for musical theater composition, Elijah Schildkraut.

For music, Marissa Brotz, Skyler Miller (piano), Joshua Guaita (piano), Andre DeGrenier (percussion and composition), Austin B. Canon (trombone) and Sommer Altier (violin).

For acting, Maya O’Day.

For the visual arts, Madison T. Miller (illustration/art directing), Margaux B. Albiez (studio art/painting), Abigal Hodgson (jewelry), Amanda Perez Prieto (painting, drawing and sculpture).

For architecture, Emily Cain.

For film/writing and directing, David J. Geiger.

For communications design, Melanie Gasparoni.

And for motion design, Joshua Galindo.

Sommer altier performing hjkl02

Violinist Sommer Altier


To learn more about the Fine Arts Society’s scholarship program, visit

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