Best Music Instruction - Cascade School of Music
Robert Lambeth, Executive Director
- Darris Hurst
- Cascade School of Music instructor Barbara Hogstad teaches Kindermusik classes.
The Cascades School of Music offers many different ways to connect through music. What are some of the most popular programs for children?
Kindermusik is growing fast. We currently have a program at the Boys and Girls Club downtown. We are planning a new class for the five- to six-year-olds who are currently in a multi-musical, vocal class here, and eventually one for an older age group. We now have four Kindermusik teachers. This summer, we'll have an outdoor Kindermusik program at the Blissful Heart Wellness Center. I'm super excited about a new, inter-generational class we have planned for some of our assisted living centers in Bend. This would involve toddlers, their parents, and the center's senior residents.
For older students, in addition to individual and group classes, we have our Awesome After-School Orchestra program, which is a strong feeder for the Central Oregon Youth Orchestra and in turn the Central Oregon Symphony. Currently held at Bear Creek Elementary and here at Cascades, we plan to expand to two other elementary schools as part of our expansion project, which will kick off this summer.
Are there particular instruments that you recommend for young beginners?
My personal opinion is that you start with the instrument in which you are most interested. Bend kids, I find, are hyper-scheduled. We are just one of many activities during their week – and in the beginning, learning music is a slow process. Having said that, I think mentally, guitar and piano are the best places to start.
What are some of the changes you are experiencing at your new location on Third Street?
We've had a 38 percent increase in enrollment since we've been here. Percussion is one of our fastest-growing departments, and of course Kindermusik. We've added nine new teachers. More importantly, as we've grown, we've seen a large increase in our tuition assistance requests. We predicted this, and since I started as director here, our budget for tuition assistance has tripled. That is due to a lot of assistance and support from our local community, state agencies, and fundraising efforts like our annual Crescendo Bendo event at the Tower Theatre, a tremendous showcase of what our students have accomplished throughout the year.
Cascade School of Music
510 NE 3rd St., Bend