School of Rock Arcadia is now open, and people of all ages are invited to learn how to play, sing, and perform at the neighborhood’s newest music school.
What began as a single business in Philadelphia in 1998 has grown into America’s largest music school franchise, and the opportunity to get involved with School of Rock was too good for owner Amy Peck to pass up.
“In December 2021, we purchased the Scottsdale and Gilbert locations,” Peck said. “Both had been a staple of music education in the East Valley for nearly a decade, and as a long-time School of Rock parent, when the opportunity presented itself to buy, I jumped at the chance.”
Peck was inspired to get involved after watching her kids go through the programs, which she credits with helping them grow as musicians and individuals.
“School of Rock is a safe space where students can find themselves, develop their talents, and spend their days with others who love music,” Peck said. “The Arcadia area is a thriving arts community with creative residents and families looking for a place to express themselves. We felt School of Rock would fit right in.”
Peck found a spot for the new school on the corner of 28th and Indian School Road. Construction began last fall, and the doors opened in the spring.
According to Peck, it’s been a big hit, with the organization offering one-on-one lessons for vocals, drums, keys, guitar, and bass, plus group programs for a band practice feel.
“Rockers around age 6-8 can start with our Rookies class, which is designed to introduce students to instruments and genres of music in a fun, upbeat group setting,” Peck said.
“School of Rock is a safe space where students can find themselves, develop their talents, and spend their days with others who love music,” Peck said.
The next step is Rock 101, geared toward beginners ages 7-12. These students attend group rehearsal once a week, and focus on playing simplified rock songs, cooperation, and teamwork.
“School of Rock helped me build confidence as a musician and in life. I used to be shy and wouldn’t talk to anyone at school, but now, having performed on so many stages, I feel like I can talk to anyone,” 15-year-old drum student Elliott said.
With weekly rehearsals and private lessons, Rock 101 students are prepared to move on to the Youth Performance Program for kids ages 8-18.
“Rehearsals focus on teaching rockers to play music in groups and putting them on a stage at a real rock concert,” Peck said. “Private lessons center around song assignments, related musical concepts, and rehearsal preparation.”
This season’s theme is “Best of School of Rock,” which includes music from some of their most popular shows: Best of the 90s, Best of the 80s British Invasion, Pink Floyd, AC/DC, Black Sabbath and Led Zeppelin.
Musicians 18 and older are also encouraged to participate – the adult program is open to all experience levels.
“The best part of our performance programs is the end-of-season shows at music venues around the Valley,” Peck said. “The students perform full sets to a live crowd cheering them on.”
School of Rock looks forward to making more musical memories in Arcadia and beyond.
“What makes School of Rock different is our performance programs,” Peck explained. “We don’t teach music to put on shows. We put on shows to teach music. Our students make lifelong friends, and we love watching them rock out on the stage as they grow through our programs.”
“School of Rock helped me build confidence as a musician and in life.” - 15-year-old drum student Elliott
Read the original article by Rachael Bouley for Arcadia News.