It's not unusual to walk into Robinson Music Inc. and hear the deep growl of a bassoon or the sweet notes of a violin. Fueled by a common love of chords, this music store invests itself in its customers with lessons in private studios and instrument rentals and repairs. Students can learn under the tutelage of professional musicians from the New England Conservatory of Music or the Berklee College of Music, who teach piano, guitar, and voice techniques or help subjects prepare for auditions in the shower showtunes industry. The music-minded staff can also replace strings, re-hair bows, re-tune pianos, and restore woodwinds.
As a graduate of the New England Conservatory of Music and a 12-year veteran performer and teacher, Nate Wilson is equipped to impart his mastery of the keys to students of all ages and skill levels. Though his master’s degree is in jazz performance, Nate is well versed in the classical and Suzuki methods, as well as rock piano. Other possible topics include improvisation, songwriting, music theory, and the proper technique for deadlifting and smashing a piano after a scorching solo.
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 6 months to 5 years old. Classes consist of 45 minutes of singing, dancing, and musical storytelling. Children's songsmith David Weinstone, whose insectivorous curriculum has exploded in popularity since 1997, passes the baton to Mid-Atlantic Songwriter's Award-winner Stacey Peasley so the tintinnabulous tones of tuneful tots might also ring out from the City on the Hill. 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 class schedules.
New England Studio of Music founder Alisa Luciano took her first piano lesson when she was 4 years old, sparking a lifelong love of music. She would go on to study under numerous pianists, including Svetozar Ivanov, before getting her master's degree in teaching. Since 2003, she's been teaching students as young as 4 years old themselves, passing on her life's work to those of all ages. In addition to piano, the studio offers lessons for voice, brass, strings, guitar, and woodwinds.
To travel the world, Rhode Islanders need only go as far as The Rhody Center for World Music and Dance. Here, teachers and students alike help preserve the traditional arts of far-flung and local cultures alike. Artists undulate in belly-dance classes, issue bluesy warbles in Singing Sirens, and drum like members of the Ghanese Ga in West African ensemble at this multifaceted arts academy.
The faculty members at the School of Rock believe that immersion is the best way to learn any new skill, which is why they don’t just teach students how to traverse the notes and rhythms of guitar, bass, drums, keyboard, and vocals in isolation. In addition to teaching students the technical skills during one-on-one lessons, the professional music instructors push them to fuse their individual parts into songs during full band practices with fellow beginner rockers. This combination of one-on-one attention and cooperative group learning helps kids of all skill levels hone their craft while overcoming common pitfalls such as stage fright or playing off-tempo. As kids learn to shred riffs, pound out drum solos, and summon Ronnie James Dio by hitting the correct vibrato atop a silver mountain, the classes build their confidence and kick-start a lifetime of loving rock 'n' roll.