Idyllwild Arts Academy
Idyllwild Arts Academy

Courage, creativity, and collaboration make the Idyllwild Arts Academy education unique.

We believe the best art is made by people who are well informed about the world rather than by narrow, one-dimensional men and women: painters who know only painting or musicians who know only music. We impart to our graduates the courage to think critically about global problems and the confidence to seek creative solutions.

Young people need courage to face the problems that besiege the contemporary world and they need creativity to find solutions. And to sustain that courage and creativity they need to work together to borrow strength from each other, while also borrowing the sorts of ideas that are always in ferment in our exceptionally diverse curriculum.

That curriculum is dual, with academic classes all morning and then arts classes all afternoon taught by professionals in Classical Music, Jazz, Songwriting, Visual Arts, Theatre, Musical Theatre, Technical Theatre, Film & Digital Media, Dance, Creative Writing, and Interdisciplinary Arts and Fashion Design.

Yet our dual curriculum is not an uneasy marriage of two distinct learning agendas. At Idyllwild Arts Academy, academics and the arts inform and inspire one another to educate young people who will bring fully developed analytic and creative gifts not only to every profession but to every life path: artistic practice, a dialogue with a patient or a monologue in the courtroom, government service—and even the deceptively simple interactions with one's children.

Both our teaching artists and our academic faculty emphasize engagement and creativity, treating their subjects not as collections of facts for memorizing, but as networks of questions for investigating. Idyllwild Arts Academy teaches the kind of problem-solving that applies to any part of our lives: How can I approach this piece of music or this play to produce the greatest emotional impact on my audience? How can I study this classic novel or this long-ago historical event to learn something important about my relationships with my family or friends or about my place in the world?

The cross-disciplinary interrogations taught by our faculty are enriched by the cross-cultural explorations enjoyed by our student body, which is more than fifty-percent international. Our students bring their hearts and minds and perspectives and tireless curiosity to us from all over the United States and some thirty other countries, including China, Mexico, South Korea, Taiwan, Japan, Turkey, Russia, Kazakhstan, Colombia, Brazil, a number of African nations, and more. Our students develop lifelong friendships with people who look and sound nothing like themselves, while being constantly reminded that the same work of art can make a radically different impression on a different set of eyes or ears.

Our insistence on showing the courage to examine other perspectives is fortified by our commitment to the guarantee of a safe learning environment. In too many high schools, learning takes a back seat to peer pressure concerning what a student looks like or who his friends are or whom she loves. But Idyllwild Arts Academy attracts students who do not pressure one another to suppress their individuality. Instead, our students encourage each other in journeys of self-discovery, on which they also discover the confidence to value one another even in their differences.

Because our education and educational environment are unlike any other, what we do is worthy of seclusion. Though we train our students to engage with the wider world, the intensity of that training requires a place apart, and our wooded 205-acre campus is a place apart both geographically and aesthetically. We are a mile above sea level in Southern California's San Jacinto Mountains, two hours from Los Angeles and San Diego but within reach of several major airports.

Your breathtaking drive to Idyllwild Arts Academy will only be the gateway to lasting beauty.

Idyllwild Arts Academy
Idyllwild, CA
951.659.2171