An Interview with Maddie Marlow-2012 MacNeal Award Winner
by Lissa Claussen
A typical year in Maddie Marlow’s young life meant moving to another town. She found herself in the public schools of Ashland, Oregon her freshman year. It was her unhappiness there that compelled her to seek change. She was depressed, her personal life had its challenges and she hated school for its lack of art instruction. She found Idyllwild Arts on the Internet; it appeared to be the perfect fit. The first year she applied there was not enough financial aid. She persevered and the second year all was in place. Maddie came to Idyllwild Arts Academy and her life took a 180 degree turn.
Maddie started in the Creative Writing department and has a love for physics; however, her true passion is dancing. She knew that if she got the opportunity to be in the dance department she would have to work. Work hard she did. Maddie became so successful she landed the title role in the ballet Cinderella. She was president of the senior class, president of the National Honors Society, writing tutor, Admission’s tour guide, and prefect in Husch Dormitory. In addition to her dance performances on campus, she was one of three students who performed 13 shows of Nutcracker with the Claremont Pacific Inland Ballet. This year, Maddie graduates from Idyllwild Arts and will be honored with the MacNeal Award. This coveted award is presented to a graduating senior who exemplifies artistic excellence, academic prowess, personal maturity and responsibility. She proved to herself that with passion and the right work ethic she could reach her goals and excel beyond.
Maddie plans to spend a gap year in Los Angeles and will teach dance to young students. The following year she plans to attend college on the east coast. She will pursue business, economics and non-profit management. This summer she will be in Denver for ballet training.
Several of her friends and teachers have commented on the huge contribution she has made to Idyllwild Arts. IAA President, Brian Cohen, said this about Maddie: “As a student leader at Idyllwild Arts, Maddie is without peer. Her leadership, involvement, and dedication are evident in her contributions as President of the IAA chapter of National Honor Society, her leadership of a student trip to Oxnard (California) for Habitat for Humanity that she initiated and planned, her organizing a Roatan (Honduras) school fundraising project, her work as a writing tutor, and her role as a dormitory prefect. In every endeavor Maddie is unfailingly mature, dependable, organized, kindhearted, and enthusiastic”.
She doesn’t feel that way at all; instead, she feels she has not done enough. She is driven to find any way possible to give back. She leaves with the desire to go out into the world and share her passion with others.