In 1998, School of Rock's first location was built in Philadelphia to strengthen students' self-confidence, develop their musicianship, and most importantly, spark an insatiable enthusiasm to learn. Today, the School of Rock franchise has branched out to more than 65 locations throughout the United States and Mexico. During the school's music lessons, encouraging instructors well versed in methods of rocking and rolling—such as strumming guitars, tickling keyboards, and causing avalanches with yodels—demystify music theory for mini Mick Jaggers of all skill levels.
School of Rock's Rock 101 program acquaints beginners with the instrument of their choice using a curriculum of weekly private lessons and group band rehearsals. Virtuosos ready to hit the stage can participate in the performance program, which prepares students for live performances that pay homage to beloved rock icons such as Queen, Led Zeppelin, and Mount Rushmore.
Steinway grand piano was not designed with a three-year-old in mind. These beautiful, expensive instruments—15 to 20 of which sprawl across Lindeblad School of Music's showroom—look too imposing and elegant for a person who still dreams of growing up to become a helicopter. But at Lindeblad School of Music’s recitals, these ivory-tickling toddlers climb the Steinway's bench, dangle their legs over its pedals, and begin to pluck rich, gorgeous sound from machines hand carved from African mahogany and other opulent woods.
It’s not that the Lindeblad family doesn’t know the worth of these instruments—after all, they’ve been restoring them for four generations. But the recitals epitomize one of Lindeblad School of Music's educational principles: a dual emphasis on practice and performance. As they’re taking lessons, students are preparing to play before an audience on a superb piano or realistically painted refrigerator box. The faculty who help them all possess an inclination to instruction as well as diversity in their musical experience. The Lindeblad School of Music offers one-on-one lessons and group classes in piano, voice, guitar, and violin. Before a course of private study, the school's director, Dr. Vogel, pairs students interested in a specific genre, such as classical or jazz, with teachers from that field, most of whom have a master's degree or a doctorate degree. Parents are welcome to meet with the director by appointment throughout the year to discuss children's progress and goal assessment. During their children's lessons, parents can wait in a reception area equipped with a coffee machine, WiFi, and a television playing music programming.
When Joan Barnes founded Gymboree Play & Music in 1976, she envisioned a facility where parents and children could play together in a safe and age-appropriate environment. In the following decades, Gymboree Play & Music spread to more than 30 countries across the globe, helping youngsters from infants to 5 years old develop cognitive, physical, and social skills. The company's instructors lead classes such as Play & Learn, its flagship course, in which parents and kids move through a seven-level program filled with storytelling, play activities, and debates on the merits of sandwich crust. Talented staffers also prep youngsters for school and foster development in areas such as music, art, and sports. Throughout all classes, they make use of custom play equipment designed by acclaimed playground designer and seesaw-tamer Jay Beck.
Kids get an edge from art and music educators at Leading Kids Academy in both private and group classes. Here, a wide-ranging curriculum taught by high-school teachers and university professors covers everything from drawing skills to flute instruction. Music programs are designed for all levels, from beginner classes for children to advanced lessons adults, but whether they're focused on music theory, rhythmic training, or performance opportunities, the classes encourage students to enjoy music. Starting at age three, art classes work with clay, printmaking, painting, design, watercolors, sculpture, and stained glass. And parents are welcome as well—in Atelier classes, grown-ups can work on their own music or art skills while their kids practice next door.
What services does your business offer and what makes your business stand out from the competition?
Vanguard Music Studio is a creative energetic learning environment. In addition to top-notch private lessons tudents can learn in bands and ensembles and have multiple public performance opportunities each year!
Do you provide any materials? What should your students expect to bring?
Students must have access to an instrument to practice on between lessons. Each teacher will arrange for students to purchase books and other materials.
What was the inspiration to start or run this business?
Vanguard Music Studio was started to offer a truly exciting, creative and supportive musical environment to students of all ages and skill levels.
What do you love most about your job?
As music instructors we feel most successful when we see our students' personal growth and development through the learning process.
The Sing With Me curriculum stretches back to the late 19th century, when a duo of sisters and early-education researchers composed the tune that would eventually become "Happy Birthday to You." Donating the popular song's royalties to a foundation, the song eventually financed the research of Ken Guilmartin, who was pursuing the role of music in early cognitive development. Teaming up with fellow researcher Lili Levinowitz, Guilmartin founded Music Together LLC, a system of musical learning that allowed kids from birth to age 7 and their parents to access the joys of music together in a fun, supportive environment. Although not every child is destined for a career as a concert pianist, Sing With Me’s teachers start from the philosophy that all children have some innate musical sense and can be taught to sing in tune, move rhythmically, and distinguish a recorder from a Charleston Chew.