It was a year ago this month that the Academy of Music for the first time in the existence of the school made a decision to only offer virtual music lessons for what we expected would be a few weeks of lockdown to “flatten the curve.” We did not know what the following weeks and months would look like, but only knew that the work we do matters and needed to continue in the best way we could offer it. The students who love the Academy of Music, who choose to enrich their lives with the creativity of learning and performing music, and value the personal relationships they develop with instructors and staff at our school, are the heart and soul of this school. And our teachers and staff are key to helping us offer them the best music lesson experience in the community. So we worked hard to find a way to move forward and honor our commitments to our students, teachers, and staff through that first month and every month that followed.
Today we are above all grateful. Throughout the year, our school director Matt Camp and office team members personally walked students and their instructors through every change and challenge along the way – an introduction to Zoom, then Breakout Rooms, a new Student Resource Center, a Safe Music School to welcome students and teachers back, a new option for a missed lesson (personal, custom recorded lesson from your teacher), Practice Champ Challenges, new ways to offer performance opportunities, and more! Our amazing teachers spent time learning how to manage new technology, reinvent their teaching for virtual instruction, and deal with the requirements of providing a safe in-person lesson. With passion, skill, and love, they continued to nurture Academy musicians one lesson at a time in ways they never imagined possible. Many of our students chose to stick with lessons and rose to the challenge of adjusting their learning and practice routines. When in-person recitals were not an option, dedicated and determined students continued to achieve and meet the challenges of performing virtually, on stage in the summer sun, and some even traveling to the Cleveland Rock and Roll Hall of Fame for a unique experience. Today we honor and celebrate everyone who has endured this past year with grace and fortitude – Academy of Music dreamers, believers, and achievers, shining stars of today and beyond.
Know that we are expecting a very busy spring and summer season for a variety of reasons. Even though 70-80% of our students have been back in-person for a while now, we are also seeing an increase of new students who have been cooped up and are ready to come back and sign up for in-person lessons. Our March registrations – the highest in the history of the school for this particular month – are a signal of what’s to come for the rest of 2021. What does that mean to you? Even though we do have some availability at each of our two locations, we want you to understand that some of our teachers are full. It’s important to remember that when you make your summer plans. What we do not want you to experience is to leave for the summer and then try to call us back in August only to discover that we do not have spots for you. If you are a current student or if you want to join us, the best option right now is to register for or continue with summer lessons so that you can keep your day and time with your favorite teacher in the fall.
As a reminder, there are four great options for missed lessons in the summer:
1. Zoom in for your lesson.
2. Get a pre-recorded make-up lesson with advanced notice.
3. Take advantage of our group make-up options.
4. Sub-lease your spot to a family member or friend.
Most importantly, get ready to enjoy your summer. Spend time at the lake, travel, enjoy family and friends you have not seen for months, have a great time. Just don’t lose your spot with your teacher by withdrawing because you will want that spot in August, especially if it’s a prime spot between 3:30 and 7:30, the ones in the most demand. Instead, take advantage of our summer make-up options. Feel free to call the office for more information.
Click on ‘CALENDAR’ from the menu on the left side of the screen
Navigate to the month of May
Click on your desired recital time
Click on ‘REGISTER’
Confirm your registration by clicking ‘REGISTER’
If you have multiple students, select the student you’d like to register then click ‘REGISTER’
Repeat steps 4-6 to register another student
In-person (WE ONLY HAVE ABOUT 10 SPOTS STILL AVAILABLE!)
Saturday, May 15, 2021
Live from the Royce Auditorium at the St. Cecilia Music Center
Performances at 10am, 11am, 12pm, 1pm, 2pm, 3pm, 4pm, and 5pm
Sunday, May 23, 2021
Via Zoom (link will be made available closer to performance date)
Performances at 2pm, 3pm, 4pm, and 5pm
Please remember that all registration will take place via our new Student Portal. All recitals will be filled on a first come first served basis, with each recital having a max capacity of 20 students. Once a recital reaches capacity, online registration for that recital will no longer be available. To be placed on a waitlist (if needed) please contact the Academy.
Congratulations to everyone who continues reaching their musical goals and keeps climbing higher on the Musical Ladder!
GRAND RAPIDS STUDENT SPOTLIGHT
Swaraa has been a student at the Academy for 18 months, and currently takes violin from Ms. Anne Marie. Outside of her music lessons, Swaraa also enjoys reading, dancing, and watching movies. Her favorite food is ice cream and her favorite musician is A.R. Rahman. In school, Swaraa’s favorite subject is language, and the coolest thing she has learned at the Academy is how to read and understand the language of music. If she were to give other music students one piece of advise it would be “be consistent and enjoy”.
JENISON STUDENT SPOTLIGHT
MaCallen has been a student at the Academy for about 1 1/2 years, and currently takes piano from Mr. Zach at our Jenison location. Outside of his music lessons, MaCallen also enjoys playing video games (Minecraft, Roblox), building Legos, and drawing. His favorite food is Goldfish crackers and some of his favorite musicians are Abygail (his sister), Mr. Zach, and Amanda (his Mom). In school, MaCallen’s favorite subject is math, and the coolest thing he has learned at the Academy is how to play Star Wars songs. If he were to give other music students one piece of advise it would be “Have Fun”.
WELCOME NEW STUDENTS!
NEW WINTER REFERRAL CONTEST
Refer a new student to the Academy, between now and April 1, and you could win FOUR $50 FAMILY RESTAURANT GIFT CARDS (VALUE $200). Plus, for every new family you refer that registers, you’ll receive a $25 gift card to Target, Amazon, or DoorDash! Not to mention, they will too!