There's arguably no better way to learn a craft than from those in the industry, and at Artportunity Knocks, that's what you'll find. A non-profit organization whose mission is to empower youth through positive arts self-expression, education, community service, and bridging cultures through the arts, Artportunity Knocks is staffed with industry professionals that help children grow and develop skills. Pursuing a variety of creative endeavors?from painting and drawing to singing and dancing?camps are designed to give kids real-world experience in the field they're aiming to pursue.
At the age of 3, Ben Edgecomb became one of the earliest American adopters of the Suzuki method, a revered technique of playing the violin invented by Dr. Shinichi Suzuki. Designed for children with malleable brains and still-growing hands, Dr. Suzuki developed the method as an easy-to-learn approach that young violinists could use to develop a lasting foray into the world of music.
Keenly aware of his early success with the instrument?which led to 15 years of playing symphony violin, including four with the University of Wisconsin?Madison string orchestra?Ben believed the Suzuki method was a reliable resource for molding new generations of virtuoso violinists. A member of the American String Teachers Association, Ben got his start as an instructor in 1990, and continues to teach students of all ages out of his home studio on a weekday afternoon, weekday evening, Saturday, and whenever the family horse needs a haircut.
Signature service: Music production and recording arts
Staff Size: 1 person
Average Duration of Services: 2–4 hours
Brands Used: Pro Tools, Cubase, Logic, Reason, Studio One, Apple, Windows
Pro Tip: Bring a list of five to ten questions to ask during Q&A sections
Art a la Carte evokes the inner creativity in children and adults with acrylic, oil, and water-color painting lessons for all experience levels. During a typical session, participants learn to paint a predetermined picture of an object such as an animal, a landscape, or fruit. The studio also includes a 50-inch high-definition TV, Blu-ray player, and sound system to liven up parties and events.
Established in 2004, Music on Wheels Academy of Performing Arts was brought to life as a mobile music academy, where its music professionals provided quality arts programming for schools seeking to enhance their after-school programs. They now cater to individuals who are hungry to engage in professional arts training at their performing arts academy.
Informed by an ever-growing body of developmental research, classes at The Music Class introduce tots to tunes and concepts that boost creativity and listening skills. In Music Pups (a $72 value) courses, children under 4 years of age gleefully sing, dance, and bang away on rudimentary instruments such as the drums or theremin. Four and 5-year-olds learn concepts of tone and rhythm in the Music Cats course (a $77 value), which lets kids experiment with keyboards before defending their dissertations on the narrative redundancies of "Old MacDonald Had a Farm." Each 45-minute course meets four times in one month-long segment, and includes CDs for parents to play at home to follow up on in-class tutelage. This Groupon may also be used toward The Music Class' ten-week music courses.