Hook ‘em Arts promotes fine arts as an integral part of the college experience

Trent Thompson

Every Monday in The Loft of Bass Concert Hall, a passionate group of students gather as Hook ‘em Arts to promote and connect students to Texas Performing Arts. Regardless of a student’s field of study, they believe that fine arts should be an integral part of a college student’s lifestyle.

As the student voice of Texas Performing Arts at UT, their aim is to foster the importance of creativity and produce connections within a common thread by
attending and engaging fine arts events as a group.

Jose Guillen, aerospace engineering junior, is the marketing officer of Hook ‘em Arts. According to Guillen, being engaged with the arts helps him in ways people
wouldn’t necessarily expect.

“Arts makes you think much more deeply because you are forced to interact with it for so long,” Guillen said. “We are always doing something all the time, and when you put all of your attention into one thing, it becomes a part of you.”

Students majoring in everything from social work to computer science to ancient history belong to Hook ‘em Arts. But despite the seemingly wide appeal of the fine arts to students across campus, a few stigmas persist that consequently turn heads away from the arts. Susannah Crowell, theatre and dance senior and President of Hook ‘em Arts offered a fresh perspective in an attempt to extinguish these stigmas.

“A lot of people don’t want to see Shakespeare because they had to read it in English in high school.” Crowell said. “But seeing the show really can take you to another place. I think if people open their eyes to how interesting and thrilling seeing a show can be as the next Marvel movie, people would see theater in a much more accurate view.”

Tacked onto this stigma is the notion that fine arts is only made for creative types. Crowell addresses those out there who are convinced it’s impossible to uncover something they will like within the fine arts.

“There is stuff out there for people, not just theater people,” Crowell said. “I’m into video games, and there are some video game plays that take you into the world. There are plays that go into sports and what it’s like to be in the career. There are shows out there for everybody, you just need to find the right show.”
Crowell also said that stepping out into an unfamiliar, yet fun and inviting atmosphere, can really help a person develop a person their personality.

Kirk Baltzell, undeclared freshman and Hook ‘em Arts member, expressed the impact fine arts has on his life.

“Once I got into fine arts and really committed to it, I’d say there is more substance to my life,” Baltzell said. “You don’t want to be stuck in the same rut in your life. You want some contrast and difference in it, and I think that will make you a happier person.”