Musicians who have honed their skills at Juilliard, Yale, and other world-renowned conservatories convene at Fort Lee School of Music to help students of all experience levels express themselves musically. Students can take piano, violin, cello, guitar, flute, or voice lessons, learning skills such as sight-reading, ear training, and music theory.
Elie Esper, the creative director and founder of his eponymous salon, has shown off his talents on magazine covers and runways from Paris to the Middle East, and was the official hairstylist of Couture Fashion Week in 2011, 2012, and 2013. Though his avant-garde designs have won international acclaim for more than 16 years, he still takes pride in beautifying brides before their trips down the aisle. Drawing on professional products from Kérastase, he washes away dirt and wig powder before infusing strands with color and sculpting shapes that defy both gravity and convention. His ability to bridge the gap between elegant and edgy attracts brides from around the world to Elie Esper Salon for wedding consultations and trial runs.
In bright, sunny studios of Areté Music Academy, pupils take part in intensive curricula taught by professional musicians, discovering their abilities and dreaming of their futures. The school culls its faculty members from schools including the Juilliard and Yale. Students—as young as ages two or as old as a cave painting of a drum set—take part in specialized courses and camps. Private and group programs focus on topics such as a particular composer, an instrument, or a specific genre. Performance opportunities abound, too, in the concerts and ensembles fostered by the school.
Spotlighted in Time magazine and the New York Times, Music for Aardvarks and Other Mammals is a nationally renowned program offering a unique take on musical education for children 3 months to 4 years old. Classes consist of 45 minutes of singing, dancing, musical storytelling, and jamming. Children's songsmith David Weinstone designed a curriculum celebrating the urban environment as well as universal concerns of youth via his classes, which have exploded into the national spotlight since their humble beginnings in 1997. Rather than being strict and results-driven, the teaching style at Music for Aardvarks is based on adult modeling and exposing children to ideas and sounds without dumbing them down. Parent participation is strongly encouraged for atonal squealers and former Yes drummers alike. Check the Music for Aardvarks website for the drop-in sessions and 10-class series schedules.
Zumba classes at M Dance & Fitness provide a hip-shaking workout so engrossing that, according to Time Out New York, students barely notice its rigor until they’re sore the next day. Set to music that ranges from pop to reggaeton, classes work the whole body through simple dance steps from schools such as salsa and merengue.
The studio’s Masala Bhangra class replaces Zumba’s Latin flair with Indian moves. Masala means “spicy” in Hindi; the routines are thus a “spicy,” or Bollywood-inflected, take on Bhangra, a traditional Indian folkdance. Studio founder Misty Clark and her team of instructors helm other dance fitness classes as well, with focuses such as ballet, kick-box dance, hip-hop, and ab work.
Showcasing their tonal talents from the Washington D.C. area to their latest Houston-area locale, the staff of Just Rock Enterprises helps guests live their musical dreams by offering private lessons in voice, piano, stage choreography, and songwriting. Instructors customize lessons to fit each student?s needs, offering unique ways of imparting knowledge such as conducting lessons via Skype or by corralling several interested parties into small-group summer camps.