Good notes, bad notes and laughter drift up the stairwell from the basement of Scarborough Bluffs United Church, home of the Scarborough Bluffs Music program.
The program started piano, guitar, keyboard, rhythm skills and vocal classes for children in Grades 1 to 6 in the fall of 2006.
The classes cost between $2 and $7 per session and the money mostly goes towards paying the professional musicians teaching the classes. Classes currently in session are held between 4p.m. and 6p.m. on Tuesdays and Wednesdays. Scarborough Bluffs Music is one of only a few such programs in the community. The program also offers summer sessions to the Boys and Girls Club of East Scarborough and at the Malvern Family Resources Centre.
This not-for-profit community music program started out small, but with the help of sponsors, volunteers, donations and grants from the Toronto Arts Council, it has grown.
“Over the last three years, the word has gotten out,” says Rosemary Galloway, program coordinator and head of the steering Committee for Scarborough Bluffs Music. “We are now at full capacity in most classes except rhythm and vocal.”
This shouldn’t discourage parents who are interested in enrolling their children because the more interest that is shown in the program and classes the sooner Scarborough Bluffs Music can offer more.
“It’s a quality-of-life issue, music broadens perspective and has been proven to enhance learning capability in other areas,” Galloway says. “Music is a huge part of daily life and it can be a hobby and a passion for children, if not a career.”
One promising student in the vocal class auditioned for and won the opportunity to sing the national anthem at a Toronto Marlies game.
All classes are held in donated space at the Scarborough Bluffs United Church, located at 3739 Kingston Rd. To register for classes, call 416 266-8352 or visit www.bluffsmusic.com.