Music has the power to unite quarrelsome souls, fill hearts with joy, and drown the squeals of possums trapped in stereo speakers. Build a wall of sound to with today’s Groupon: for $45, you get one month of group music classes in piano, voice, or guitar at Southern Highlands Music Studio (a $103 total value, including the one-time registration fee).
A patient team of musical linguists teaches students to translate the gobbledygook of quarter notes and treble clefs into melodious poetry in 45-minute weekly sessions. Piano lessons guide groups of no more than six through the murky waters of theory, utilizing the trusted Mayron Cole Piano Method as a reference map. Beginners start out with the fundamentals of rhythmic reading and keyboard geography on a studio piano, and intermediate students learn compound rhythm and atonal audience antagonism. Guitar students learn to pluck strings with panache in a class that covers the basics of theory and proper maintenance before advancing on to face-melting chord progressions. An easy-to-follow format allows impatient rockers to play popular power ballads right away. Three levels of voice lessons levels coax beautiful harmonies from untrained esophagi, with tone-enhancing techniques for breath support and pitch matching practiced in a supportive environment.
The intimate group setting of each class allows for practice in small orchestras and ensembles, giving future symphonic pianists or hair-metal revivalists the skills necessary to play effectively with other musicians. Though the studio provides pianos, guitar students must supply their own axes, and voice students are discouraged from sharing sets of vocal chords.