Allegra Boggess is our Director of Orchestra Programs at the Upper School and she serves on the dorm team in Jane. Ms. Allegra has worked at Rabun Gap since 2017 and holds a Bachelor of Music in Piano Performance from the University of Colorado at Boulder. Prior to coming to Rabun Gap, she taught piano, oboe and music academics for five years at Afghanistan National Institute of Music in Kabul, Afghanistan, the first and only music school in Afghanistan. This past November, she ran in the New York City Marathon! In her free time, Ms. Allegra enjoys learning new instruments and being outdoors.
What did you do before coming to Rabun Gap?
Before coming to Rabun Gap, I was teaching music at the Afghanistan National Institute of Music in Kabul.
What makes Rabun Gap special to you?
The people. For me, that is my students in choir, orchestra, and beginning piano class, and my colleagues in the arts department. We make a really great team and we have a lot of fun.
Why did you decide to become a teacher?
The music teachers I had when I was growing up were significantly important figures in my life - they made me feel seen, they inspired me to work hard, they guided me through tough times (musically and emotionally), they made me laugh, and they gave me access to the world of music which became my life. I did not intend to become a teacher, but once I tried it (over a decade ago), I fell in love with it and have kept with it ever since.
As a music teacher, do you have a favorite piece to play, sing, or teach?
My high school choir teacher always accompanied our choir singing the gospel number "Hallelujah, Salvation and Glory" and I remember LOVING it. I do that with my choir every year now.
What is your favorite aspect of being a dorm parent?
Chatting with the students who drop into the office.
You ran the New York Marathon back in November. Tell us about your experience training and running the actual marathon.
It was the hardest thing I've ever done both physically and mentally but I can't wait to sign up for another one! I learned so much about the power of consistency. Anyone can run a marathon as long as you take the training one day at a time. And the race itself one step at a time.
What do you like most about working with our students?
The number of countries and cultures represented in the student body. One project I've worked on every year I've taught at Rabun Gap is having the orchestra play the national anthems of the home countries of our students. We haven't finished yet!
What is your favorite memory from the time you have worked here so far?
That is such a difficult question. I would say each year's musical. It's always a monstrous undertaking but between all the enthusiastic students and the arts faculty working together, we're able to put on a show that's hopefully as entertaining for the audience at it is for us.
What’s the most interesting thing about you that we wouldn’t learn from your resume alone?
I have two matching orange cats, one I brought home from Afghanistan, and the other I adopted at the animal shelter down the road in Franklin, NC. They have their own Instagram following.