Come Meet Our New Teachers!

photo credit: http://cheverlynurseryschools.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/07/WELCOME1.jpg
photo credit: http://cheverlynurseryschools.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/07/WELCOME1.jpg

The end of the 2014-2015 school year brought forth quite a large amount of change at Park Cities School of Music. Our recitals grew to unprecedented numbers, which was a reflection of our increasing enrollment. The instrument rental program saw great success, and our music library expanded due to donated sheet music from the community. Group classes were at capacity, and our involvement in community events & performances became a focal point for the school. It’s really difficult to put the 2014-2015 school year in perspective because it was truly a tremendous time for PCSoM. A big “Thank You” is in order for you all!

We also saw two of the school’s longest tenured instructors move on. Moe Ramos had been with the school since October 2011, joining the school weeks after its opening. Sarah Bellows joined the PCSoM faculty in April 2012. Both instructors had become well-known & with their absence, we knew we’d have some big shoes to fill.

Luckily, we have had a great crop of teachers join the faculty in the last few months, doing more to solidify our reputation for providing quality music education here at Park Cities School of Music. One thing to keep in mind is that some of our instructors will be operating between Park Cities School of Music and our sister school, Lakewood Conservatory of Fine Arts (opening Fall 2015; https://www.facebook.com/LakewoodConservatoryFineArts). Stay tuned for updates on which instructors will be splitting time between schools, but be advised that our teachers will be VERY busy this school year. Enrollment is open, so if you have interest in music lessons or classes in the arts, act soon & don’t hesitate in contacting us for more info.

Here are our new teachers:

imageBaoyi (Ellie) Zeng (PIANO) started playing piano at the age of six in China. She earned her Bachelor of Arts in Music Education with numerous scholarships and prizes from Xi’an Conservatory of Music in China. And she is currently pursuing her Master of Music Education degree in Piano Pedagogy at Texas Christian University, where she is studying piano pedagogy with Dr. Ann M. Gipson and piano with Prof. Jose Feghali and Mr. Harold Martina. Baoyi has been teaching piano since 2008. She won second prize in the Music Teacher Competition in Teaching Courseware of University and third prize in the Music Teacher Competition in Teaching Skills of University in 2011. She is very enthusiastic about teaching and has also been actively involved in piano performance and accompaniment. Baoyi is a teaching assistant at Texas Christian University teaching piano classes for non music major and music major undergraduate students; piano classes for adult; group piano for children; private piano lesson for college elective students and music secondary students; private piano lesson through TCU’s Music Preparatory Division; and Young Early Childhood Music lesson. She is a member of MTNA (Music Teachers National Association). Baoyi is very passionate about teaching and patient with all students. She strives to show her students how beautiful music is through the piano and hopes to help her students make music a valuable part of their lives.

imageAbigail Potts (VIOLIN/VIOLA) Ms. Potts is currently an active musician in the Dallas/Fort Worth metroplex. She performs with various symphony orchestras including those of Plano, Irving and San Angelo. Additionally, she has performed in concert with Diana Ross, Ben Folds, Alessio Bax, Lucille Chung, Andres Diaz, Chee-Yun Kim, and Natalie MacMaster. Abigail teaches private lessons in violin, viola and piano in the Richardson School District as well as her own private studio.

Abigail was born in Dallas Texas. At age 5 her family moved to the small town of Prairieville, located in East Texas. Abigail began her musical studies with classical piano at age seven and the violin at age ten. Abigail’s primary piano teachers included Phyllis Fox of Ola Texas and Dr. Heather Schmidt. Her first violin teachers included Clare Adkins Cason, Mary Alice Rich and Daphne Volle. Her teachers have also included Sherry Kloss, Claire Hodgkins and Elaine Skorodin all of which were students of the famous Jascha Heifetz. In High-School Abigail was the Concertmaster of the Greater Dallas Youth Orchestra’s Philharmonic for the 2007-2008 season. She won First Place in the Concerto Competition and made her solo performance in the Fall of 2008 at the Meyerson Symphony Center with the Philharmonic Orchestra. In 2010, Abigail won First Place in the Hubbard Chamber Music Festival, placed third in the 2010 Dallas Music Teachers Association Concerto Competition and was concertmaster at Idyllwild Music Festival and the All-State String Orchestra in 2009.

As a Freshman in the Fall of 2010, Abigail won first place in the SMU Undergraduate Concerto Competition. She performed Maurice Ravel’s Tzigane with the Meadows Symphony Orchestra under the direction of Michelle Merrill in January 2011. In 2011, Abigail was the recipient of the Clara Freshour Nelson Music Scholarship. She performed for the Texas Association of Music Schools annual conference in Austin, Texas in January of 2012.

Abigail graduated Summa Cum Laude from Southern Methodist University in the Fall of 2013 with a Bachelor of Music in Violin Performance, studying with Emanuel Borok, former Concertmaster of the Dallas Symphony Orchestra.

imageAndre Israel Echeverria Butler (PIANO, VOICE, GUITAR, DRUMS) Andre was born and raised in Guatemala and influenced with music at an early age, he started giving piano lessons to children, ages, 4 to 14. At the age of 19, Andre began teaching ESL classes at IGA, a government-backed institute for English learning. He taught young people as well as adults there for one year. He then started teaching ESL classes at a Korean academy, preparing students for their entrance exams in English-speaking schools. In 2010, Andre moved to the U.S. to pursue a career in music. While studying at college, he taught private lessons.

Andre graduated from UT Arlington where he successfully completed his Bachelor’s Degree with a 4.0 in Music Composition under Dr. George Chave, and Audio Engineering under Micah Hayes. He plans to further his studies by pursuing a Master’s Degree in Film Scoring. Now, thanks to his Bachelor’s Degree in Music Composition and Audio Engineering, he has a wider and deeper knowledge of music, which enables him to share with his students. Andre teaches piano, voice, guitar, and drum lessons.
Page-1-Image-1Misha Frayman (GUITAR, UKULELE) Misha Frayman has been playing guitar professionally since the age of 17. He graduated Magna Cum Laude with a Bachelor’s Degree in Music Business from Jacksonville University. He continued on to earn his Masters in Business Administration in an accelerated one-year program while continuing to perform both with the university and professionally. During his time there he studied jazz as well as classical guitar and performed as a member of the Guitar Ensemble, Jazz Combo, Piano Ensemble, Marching Band, Men’s Choir, and University Singers. He also is a member of the honorary music society Pi Kappa Lambda. In Mr. Frayman’s professional career he has specialized in playing for musicals with credits on acoustic and electric guitars, piano, banjo, and voice. He has performed for musicals such as “9 to 5: The Musical”, “Jesus Christ Superstar”, and “RENT”. Since the age of 14 he has been active playing with various original alternative rock groups and jazz combos. In addition he also performs as a solo artist covering classics and contemporary tunes alike.

ajAmanda Jennings (PIANO, VOICE) Amanda is a recent graduate with her Texas Educator Certificate for All-Level Music (Early Childhood through 12th grade). She is trained in classical music and recently received her Bachelors of Music with honors in Music Education with a concentration in piano and voice. Amanda has had the opportunity to have performed in numerous recitals, weddings, and churches around the Dallas/Fort Worth, Austin, and Longview areas. She has professionally accompanied voice students, the ETBU Strings ensemble, and has student teaching experience directing choral ensembles and teaching general music in the public schools.

Amanda has had numerous opportunities to directing choir ensembles, professionally teach piano, voice, and general music lessons and hold student recitals. During April of 2014 Amanda gave her Junior solo piano recital in completion of her private lessons at East Texas Baptist University. While attending East Texas Baptist University, Amanda acquired a multitude of diverse opportunities to expand her performance, and pedagogical experience.

 

 

 

“Back-to School” Time Management

photo credit: https://www.cmich.edu/ess/studentaffairs/SDS/PublishingImages/time-management.jpg
photo credit: https://www.cmich.edu/ess/studentaffairs/SDS/PublishingImages/time-management.jpg

Hey, loyal PCSoM blog readers! It has been quite the summer session at our school. Usually, the summer presents a small dip in activity, with both families & faculty activity schedules changing drastically between June through August. Apparently, though, someone forget to let Summer 2015 know that because we have seen a whirlwind of activity throughout the summer. Camps were out of sight, we added new faculty members while also saying good-bye to familiar faces, and if you’ve been a fairly diligent follower of all PCSoM social media, you noticed that our sister school, Lakewood Conservatory of Fine Arts (LCFA), is expected to make its debut in

October 2015. You gotta give us points for being over-achievers. 🙂 It’s one thing to have a busier-than-usual time of year, but to be opening up another school all at the same time just seems nutty! Still, it means that the community at large is talking about us, and our reputation for quality music education is spreading, and we can’t thank you enough! 😀

This ever-present buzz of movement got us thinking, and when it came time to understanding our successful orchestration of chaos, we succeeded by something as simple as time management. Everyone had tasks to complete; we just had to be as efficient as possible in completing those tasks. As the new scademic year approaches, it’s important to know that time management is a pivotal part of a child’s life. Racing back and forth from activity to activity is the new reality, but making it all work doesn’t have to be a terrible burden. Better yet, get your kids to help in the process. By helping them see how organizing their time makes life easier to navigate, you’re teaching them a life skill.

In the interest of honesty & transparency, we admit that the whole notion of time management is a vital part of what we do at Park Cities School of Music. We teach music, and in order for our students to develop, they have to practice. In order for practice to take place, it needs to be part of student’s weekly schedule, though no teacher would mind have a few “daily practitioners.” 🙂 Here are a few links to help guide you to kid-friendly family scheduling sanity as the new school year is within arm’s reach. Enjoy!

http://pbskids.org/itsmylife/school/time/article5.html

https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/growing-friendships/201403/time-management-kids

http://www.bgca.org/Documents/impact2012-TMTips.pdf

SUMMER MUSIC CAMPS at Park Cities School of Music

photo credit: http://virtual-sacrifice.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/07/1991758.jpg
photo credit: http://virtual-sacrifice.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/07/1991758.jpg

Can you believe that it’s almost the end of the Spring 2015 semester?!? It feels as though we just got past the holidays, and now BAM! Summer’s here! We can almost hear the usual summer-related jokes & observations now…

“I cannot wait for Fall to get here!”

“Hot enough for ya?”

“You know, I can deal with the heat, but it’s the humidity! UGH!”

With the advent of the summer season comes PCSoM’s 4th installment of Summer Music Camps…Summer 2015 edition! We’ve brought back your favorite camps, and we are stoked to work with a fresh crop of families looking to beat the heat with positive musical education-based camps. Some of you may be wondering why we’d mention a “fresh crop” of families. Typically, camps foster an annual relationship with families, but here at PCSoM, we’ve got a unique phenomenon that takes place with our little campers. More often than not, they use camps as a springboard to private lessons on one instrument, so in a way, we have campers “graduate” every summer!

PCSoM Summer 2015 Camp Schedule: http://pcsom.com/events-info/pcsom-summer-2015-camp-schedule
PCSoM Summer 2015 Camp Schedule: http://pcsom.com/events-info/pcsom-summer-2015-camp-schedule

Come join the fun at Park Cities School of Music this summer, ALL SUMMER, and check out our summer camp schedule running from June 1 through August 21 (http://pcsom.com/events-info/pcsom-summer-2015-camp-schedule). As always, thank you for your support of PCSoM, and we can’t wait to hear from you soon!

The Work is Never Done at Park Cities School of Music

photo credit: http://barkpost.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/06/bulldog-puppies-in-their-basket.jpg
photo credit: http://barkpost.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/06/bulldog-puppies-in-their-basket.jpg

It’s amazing to think that we are already one-fourth done with 2015! Wasn’t 2014 just here a second ago?!? Then again, for the weary folk that go into work day in and day out, there is no clear start or stop to work. These warriors of the workplace are driven by a work ethic that keeps them moving forward. An extra cup of coffee, a kind-of-healthy-but-not-really-healthy muffin (or two), and they are off!

We here at PCSoM can definitely relate (cue the reason for the puppy picture). It’s important to note that while we operate as a school & have specific starts and ends to semesters, we actually operate 365 days a year. Ask any of the instructors at the school, and they’ll tell you it’s a job that never really has a clear “end.” This kind of work can tiring, and as you’re recovering from an event (or two), there is the next event, and the next performance, and the next lesson…and it goes on.

There is the setting of the school year calendar for the following school year, which starts as early as May or June, which is essentially as the previous Spring semester is ending. Calendars from area public schools, private schools, and charter schools are used as the basis for our calendar dates. Moreover, we also pay attention to religious calendars as well as government holidays. Sometimes, we can’t avoid conflict, but hashing out a calendar as we pour over numerous other calendars is an exhausting task.

photo credit: https://www.timecenter.com/pages/articles/img/do-it-now.jpg
photo credit: https://www.timecenter.com/pages/articles/img/do-it-now.jpg

Soon after a school year ends, evaluation of policy and procedures takes place. No matter how hard you plan, there are always a few things that need tweaking. We receive input from our instructors, families, and the community as a whole for ways to improve. PCSoM finds it vital to constantly re-evaluate. Too often, complacency sets in & a school/business/office lets things slide. This can be detrimental to success, and it sends a negative message to the public. Our school always pushes for excellence, even if it means that we need to change something.

PCSoM offers music camps every summer (http://pcsom.com/events-info/pcsom-summer-2015-camp-schedule), and that takes careful planning so as to not interfere with our regular lessons, which are always in session. Planning of these camps takes place as we emerge from the holiday break and start Spring semester. This, in turn, means that our director, Eva Brandys, and her prospective camp “counselors” are going back & forth over the holiday break. With an international staff, that can be quite a task.

We offer auditions for performances multiple times a year, and this requires time and energy from administrative personnel and faculty members. With each performance calling on different presentations of performers, new groups and ensembles are formed, thereby necessitating a rehearsal day and time. This is a year-round process as are provided with performance opportunities being offered to us from all over the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex.

PCSoM offers instrument rentals, and with this comes the physical maintenance of the instruments, not to mention the maintenance of the inventory. Strings have to be changed, fingerboards have to be re-glued, rosin has to be replaced, case linings even have to be cleaned! There is also the maintenance of our in-house pianos. They are tuned regularly because when you have the number of students that we do come through and play on the piano (gently or otherwise), there is definitely a need to make sure that they are in great playing condition.

photo credit: http://ilikecorgis.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/10/The-First-Few-Days-Taking-Care-of-Your-New-Corgi-Puppy.jpg

With the exception of a few larger pieces and some glossier materials, our school prints all of the materials in the school. Fliers, ads, posters, welcome packets, school calendars, it all comes from our office. When it comes to our recitals, with the exception of once over the course of four years, we’ve printed our programs. We maintain and update master copies of nearly everything in our office, so when you do receive something from a teacher or administrative personnel, it’s a a piece of us.

Preparation for recital pieces takes place all the time, but certainly at the halfway point of each semester, a piece is being chosen and worked on regularly until showtime. Master classes are offered for recital etiquette, and we also bring in guest performers and masters of their craft to present master classes for our students.

photo credit: http://ilikecorgis.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/10/The-First-Few-Days-Taking-Care-of-Your-New-Corgi-Puppy.jpg
photo credit: http://ilikecorgis.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/10/The-First-Few-Days-Taking-Care-of-Your-New-Corgi-Puppy.jpg

Certainly, we could keep going, but our main point in this post is to get across just how much everyone at Park Cities School of Music works to make our school run. Our dogged work ethic and need to succeed goes beyond personal achievement and becomes a matter of pride.  Once in a while, we are able to slow down like our little corgi friend here, but we know there is work to do, and all of you are depending on us to do great things.

As always, thank you for your continued support of PCSoM because without you, it wouldn’t be possible. Check out our piano lab project (still plenty of time to donate and earn great rewards: https://www.moola-hoop.com/project/view/2577), and we’ll see you bright & early tomorrow morning!

 

The Story of Park Cities School of Music, Part 3: Looking to the Future

cropped-l-2.jpgAs we reflect on the amount of growth we’ve experienced since the ‘early days,’ we smile when we realize just how PCSoM has developed from Eva Brandys’s dream to a burgeoning reality! Beyond our physical growth, the school has done all it can to maintain a presence in the community, building partnerships with schools and organizations throughout D/FW. PCSoM has also done it’s best to maintain a virtual presence, developing a Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/ParkCitiesSchoolOfMusic), a Twitter account (https://twitter.com/PkCsSchoolMusic), and even investing time with Instagram (https://instagram.com/pcsom2011/). Our social media extends beyond Dallas and has become international. We’re recognized by other culture and arts organizations in North Texas, and we work hard at making sure that we show an honest representation of who we are and what we’re all about at PCSoM. 10885407_950094208351865_8252373542134738281_nFaculty members continue to complete graduate degrees and even Eva finds it necessary to be a better director and business owner.

Our photos reflect our pride in our students and school. Our blog posts try to inform and entertain. Our social media attempts to make music education cool (though that’s pretty easy since it’s TOTALLY COOL!). All in all, Park Cities School of Music has tried to lay the down the foundation for a lifelong place in the D/FW arts landscape, and we believe we’re making our mark.

But inherent to this growth and success is attention to the needs of the school. We have an instrument rental program established at the school. We tote a professional keyboard to remote events to provide a stellar performance opportunity to our students and a pro performance to the public. Upgrades have been made to our office copier and portable PA systems, but all of these items require upkeep and maintenance. As our administrative office takes shape, we hope to have an updated computer for admin/faculty use. The next MAJOR move in our school’s work to provide an even more stellar music education experience is the addition of a state-of-the-art piano lab to utilize for camps, as well as for group piano lessons. We’ll be launching a crowdfunding project with MoolaHoop (http://www.moola-hoop.com/) on March 17, 2015 that will allow us to reach out to the community and beyond in the hopes that others feel that PCSoM is worth supporting.

942208_622932714401351_1991463006_nIt has been fun looking back on the last few years! Though the dream was big, we never could have imagined how far we would have come. The future looks bright for Park Cities School of Music, and we hope that our journey down memory lane has allowed you to see how important we feel music education really is, and, more importantly, we hope we’ve convinced you that PCSoM is worth the support. Spread the word by following us on social media! Tell your friends and family that are interested in music lessons that PCSoM is the place to be for music education in D/FW! Be compelled to help us reach our goals through our crowdfunding efforts because you see how great the cause is, and finally, always know that we here at Park Cities School of Music cannot begin to appropriately express our gratitude toward our families and friends. Our success is a direct result of your unwavering support, and we humbly say, “Thank you!”

 

The Story of Park Cities School of Music, Part 2: Significant Growth

307803_496802723681018_354788560_nAs 2011 came to a close and 2012 made it’s presence known, Park Cities School of Music was beginning to grow in a big way. With the establishment of a vocal and guitar department, students with an interest in other forms of music such as rock, pop, and jazz began to see PCSoM as a place to spread their wings. New string teachers came in, widening the array of classical instruments we provided instruction for, and it quickly became obvious that the school needed to physically expand.

The plan was to utilize newly available space in another unit attached to the original “back” of the school and have it ready for the 2012-2013 school year. This, however, proved to be too quick a turnaround. Lessons that normally took place at the school were now taking place at students’ homes. New students, though more inclined to take lessons at PCSoM weren’t quite sure what to make of the new situation, but Ms. Brandys assured families time & time again that it would all work out & that lessons would be back to normal ASAP. 185197_499880333373257_3954380_nSure enough, by October 2012, PCSoM had doubled in size, boasting a space that had more lesson rooms, a 2nd waiting area, and an official school office for the director. Gone would be the days of using a curtain to delineate the office area!

 

Still, Ms. Brandys had bigger plans. She knew the school had done well by expanding, but she knew she wanted to provide more for the current faculty and students, but she also knew that she had to think about the future. What would set the school apart from other musical education institutions and provide wildly exciting possibilities for the talented students that came through our doors on a daily basis? The stage, so to speak, was set, and it was decided that recording facilities and a piano lab were going to be a part of the future of Park Cities School of Music. The question then became…How are we going to make this happen?

Ms. Brandys, along with other faculty members, decided that a faculty concert would be a great idea to get students and their families, as well as the public as a whole, to come to the school, see the changes that had been made since Day 1, and then get an idea of what was in the works. 479885_578551988839424_445716823_nOn February 24, PCSoM hosted it’s very first faculty concert as a benefit for the school and it’s lofty, though important, goals. We held the event at our school in the very space that would, in the future, be home to the technology that would be the hallmark of PCSoM. What a tremendous show! We had a packed house, and we actually raised money! 544443_578552022172754_871733523_nMs. Brandys figured that even if we didn’t have a penny come in, at the very least, we could provide a great show for the community. Apparently, the community decided our goals were important enough to contribute to the cause. Even then (nearly two years ago), everyone understood that access to technology would be the foundation for great things at our school.

There was one obstacle to overcome for Ms. Brandys, and that was how our successful benefit show would do in terms of making a dent in the financial juggernaut of her goals for the school. As it turns out, the plans had to be placed on hold because, quite frankly, the expense was just a bit too great for PCSoM. Still, Ms. Brandys knew that her faculty and her student body were hungry and excited for change. She began talking to families and asking teachers for their input. What could PCSoM do NOW that would be of great benefit to the entire school, all while still maintaining the importance of reaching the technological goals set forth by the initial expansion, and still providing the students with materials for the enrichment of their music education? As such, we created the so-called “Green Classroom”, fit with not only a piano but also with a number of instruments, toys, books and even bubbles (!) that would aid group class instruction. In fact, take a look at our ‘Albums’ on Facebook & you’ll notice that group class instruction, camps, and master classes all take place in the Green Classroom (https://www.facebook.com/ParkCitiesSchoolOfMusic/photos_stream?tab=photos_albums). We also created two classrooms, one fitted with an electronic grand piano and the other actually housing Ms. Brandys’ own piano. Each of these rooms hosts individual piano lessons, voice lessons, rehearsals, and auditions. Yes, the initial goal of the newly expanded space wasn’t quite reached, but the benefit of the new amenities in the facility brought a new vibrant energy to the school! Stay tuned for Part 3 and the resurgence of PCSoM’s technological goals in 2015 and beyond!

The Story of Park Cities School of Music, Part 1: The Early Days

Celebrating the opening of Park Cities School of Music
Celebrating the opening of Park Cities School of Music

PCSoM opened September 2011 with 3-4 teachers, three lessons rooms, and a large room w/a grand piano that served as a 4th lesson room (of sorts) if necessary. Guitar, cello, drums, group classes (in their present glory), ukulele & brass were not yet part of the offerings. Amenities consisted of a few children’s books and bottles of water, plus a black couch and SOME additional seating. Even with the quaint, somewhat Spartan setting, it was the reputation and hard work of our director, Eva Brandys, that kept the community on our side.

Everyone knew how hard Eva had worked to make this official school front come to fruition. She’d put in her dues traveling to student’s homes and using her own home as a “studio” for lessons. As the students piled up and the idea of a music school became less fantasy and more reality, Eva’s own performance work came second to her unwavering work as an instructor. She knew she had to put everything she had into it, and she had to find a winning combination of faculty members to make it work.

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Though she smiled, Eva understood the risk involved in opening her own music school. Pictured: Gabe Kozielec, Sunny Courtwright, Maneka Naidu, Stella Kozielec, Camille Gravel, & Lawrence Lim

But the prospect of having her own music school was terrifying. Why? Well, the one thing people tend to forget is that while we still maintain a school status, much of the operation of the school is that of a small business. There’s no need to bore you with the numbers; small businesses are a risky venture. In fact, they FAIL ALL THE TIME. It’s not a matter of not succeeding…THEY FAIL. With everything on the line,  Eva opened Park Cities School of Music on September 10, 2011, and she never looked back. Grocery lists gave way to supply lists, and insecurities about small “DIY/fix-it” projects became lost in the need to handle any, and all, situations that presented themselves.

The school seemed to be successful, though it was initially built on students already under Eva’s tutelage. There was a need to expand and meet the needs/wants of the community at large. It’s at this point that Park Cities School of Music began to grow, and with this growth came the need to outfit the school with more technology, equipment, & supplies that would allow new teachers & new programs to operate in an optimal way. Stay tuned for Part 2!

PCSoM Looks to the Future…

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photo credit: https://public-dm2305.files.1drv.com/y2pcX0GGGgrb22TG415ZRReXwvC0w761Qq8sRpuFLZiuzp6yKEPbLEZ22XeSp0833YrByMwfC5uwAewfFAYATPXD-llQUF4epD_F0PpZ68cfyA/change%20wordle.jpg?rdrts=97601379

It’s amazing to think that our school opened its doors Sept. 10, 2011. With almost four years under our belt, we’ve seen a small school with a few practice rooms expand to an in-demand institution covering over 2,000 sq. ft. while maintaining nearly (20) teachers and close to (300) students. We’ve responded to the needs of the community, expanding our offerings in terms of instruments we teach, offering rental instruments, & re-working our tuition system to make things easier for families while still maintaining a “no contract” environment that gives a great amount of flexibility for busy families.

Much of our school’s success has been due to the vivacity of our owner & director, Eva Brandys. She has never turned down a chance to showcase what the school can offer in terms of its instruction AND the talent of her faculty. Ms. Brandys wanted to bring in the best teachers to her school, and a casual look over their biographies shows teachers with advanced degrees completed or in progress. Her faculty members are respected members of the local/regional/state/national/international music community, and the faculty maintain close ties with their communities & places of worship, all the while being world-class musicians. It’s no small wonder that Park Cities School of Music is the place to be for music lessons in the area!

It’s important to highlight these attributes because PCSoM is once again moving forward with progress. Details are coming on our bigger plans, but one thing’s for sure: we’re responding to the community’s needs once again. Phone calls, emails, bumping into families out & about at the grocery store, we hear the same thing…

“What do you have to offer in terms of GROUP piano classes/lessons?”

moving_forward
photo credit: http://about.extension.org/wp-content/uploads/2013/01/moving_forward.jpg

Most people think of schools as concrete, static institutions that remain constant as the world keeps turning. We here at PCSoM, however, have always viewed our school as an evolving entity, reshaping itself to remain relevant in a ever-changing world, all the while maintaining the quality of the music education programs that have made it a premier music school.

Here’s a great link to check out:

http://www.wqxr.org/#!/story/top-five-futuristic-instruments/?utm_source=local&utm_medium=treatment&utm_campaign=carousel&utm_content=item1

These intriguing looks at what technology means to the world of music are a great way for everyone to see beyond the conventional idea of the musical instrument. We also believe it’s a great way for our families & followers to see the possibilities that exist with technology in music. Stay tuned for more about what PCSoM has on the way!

The Fight for Music Education Is Real

photo credit: http://fc07.deviantart.net/fs50/i/2009/267/3/1/Music_is_my_Life_2_by_LietingaDiena.jpg
photo credit: http://fc07.deviantart.net/fs50/i/2009/267/3/1/Music_is_my_Life_2_by_LietingaDiena.jpg

All too often, there are news reports, newspaper blurbs and disenfranchising tales of music programs and the arts, as a whole, becoming no more across the United States. Time and time again, the arts take a hit because there are just so many needs when it comes to education. Without support of funding, these programs cannot, and more often than do not, survive. Yet, there is so much literature, research, and feedback telling us that music programs provide an invaluable amount of good for young people of all ages. What can schools. communities, governments and organizations alike do when a budget/bottom line puts them up against a wall?

Answering the call for help, there are numerous organizations around the country trying their best to make sure music programs don’t go away for good. Some might be a bit cold & calculated in their criticism of these groups, saying that music programs don’t have the same worldly significance as core classes and traditional school subjects. Supporters of these programs would likely argue that it’s the cumulative effect of these music programs that allow students to have success in their traditional school work. PCSoM would like to share a number of links to organizations whose work it is to make music programs a permanent part of communities all over the US. Moreover, these links will hopefully give followers and new visitors alike a chance to have a wealth of information in one concise post. As the title indicates, the fight for music education is real, and without the work of organizations like those listed, as well as all of the independent purveyors of  music education tucked away in local music schools/stores/studios all over the country (and world), it stands to reason that music education would be in serious trouble.

The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame’s Education Programs: https://rockhall.com/education/

The Fender Music Foundation: http://www.fendermusicfoundation.org/grants/

VH1’s Save The Music: http://www.vh1savethemusic.org/

The Mr. Holland’s Opus Foundation: http://www.mhopus.org/

Music For All: http://www.musicforall.org/

Turnaround: Arts (part of The President’s Committee on the Arts & the Humanities): http://turnaroundarts.pcah.gov/

The National Association for Music Education: http://www.nafme.org/

The NAMM Foundation Resources: http://www.nammfoundation.org/what-we-do/best-communities-music-education

Sonic Bids info on Non-Profit Programs Helping Music Education: http://blog.sonicbids.com/4-awesome-nonprofits-that-are-saving-music-education