December 3, 2019

Article by: Annabelle Park, former Irvine Talks student board member.

It’s been three years since the Irvine Talks event was first created, and is quickly becoming a highly-anticipated annual event in the community.

Irvine is a place where academic rigor is high, and sports are competitive, creating school pride and healthy rivalries between the high schools. Students’ interactions with their peers at other schools in Irvine are often based on competition, rather than cooperation, and it was out of a desire to change this that Irvine Talks was born.

In 2016, a group of students enlisted the help of IPSF in creating a unique event that would combat the disconnection and distance between the high schools and celebrate the human experience through the arts. Hundreds of people showed up to the first Irvine Talks, bringing together students and families from across the city. Since then, Irvine Talks has been planned by a student board, in partnership with IPSF, to give the students of Irvine a night to put aside the competition and connect with one another.

On November 23, Irvine Talks once again successfully united the community for a night of arts and performance at the Portola Theater. Every year, there is an overarching theme to tie all the different aspects of the night together, with this year’s theme being Movement.

The night started out with the outdoor event, which included student art galleries, student bands, food trucks, and interactive activities. This facilitated a space for students and families to experience and connect with one another. Most notable were the collaborative murals, which were created by students from all of the different high schools working together to make one beautiful work of art.

The outdoor event was then followed by the performance portion. There were 16 different performances, all interpreting Movement in a unique way. Movement was conveyed through dances, speeches, and songs about the ability to inspire others, to move freely, and to also let yourself be moved. The performers connected with the audience through relatable topics like body dysmorphia, self-love, purpose, mental health, and vulnerability.

“IPSF is proud to continue to provide guidance and sponsorship for Irvine talks, and feel honored to be able to not only help the passions of the students manifest into a reality, but also unite the community in support of education,” said Cheryl Braun, Chief Program Officer for Irvine Public Schools Foundation “Congratulations to all the students for their hard work and dedication to make their dream a reality and bring this enriching experience to their peers.”

Photo Gallery