The Bronx loves music—all kinds of music. Mambo and hip-hop were born in the Borough. Street fairs are full of people playing the music of their communities. Families here still make music together. Our neighbors travel across the city to enjoy great musical performances. Yet in spite of this enthusiasm, Bronx students’ regular education allows them relatively few opportunities to learn about and express themselves through music. Despite recent progress, Bronx schools offer significantly less music education than schools in the other four boroughs. We believe that without this, our students are not receiving a complete education nor are they being treated equitably, and our Music program is helping to remedy this situation.
In 2010, led by Board Member Gaetana Enders we began the process of creating a sequential after school music education program for the youth we serve each day. Now all of the over 250 young students in our smART Kids after school program have access to a high quality music education. Working with skilled teaching artists they are learning to play the violin and piano or how to control their voices and sing beautifully. We are also taking them to concerts at venues around the City and bringing established performers to Casita for special concerts. Our talented students are also performing themselves at special concerts in our building, at venues around the Bronx and even with professional performers at venues in Manhattan.
The mission of Casita Maria’s music program is to develop a life-long love of music through music making, music literacy and performing.
- Offer individual and group music instruction in piano, voice, violin and cello to students of all levels and abilities
- Provide a safe and creative learning environment
- Teach our students to reach a high level of musicianship through practice and guidance
- Create a complete music-making experience for students including hands-on learning, self -expression and reflection
- Develop music literacy by learning to use and understand the language of music through listening and responding to live and recorded repertoire, notation, recording, digital media, description, analysis, and evaluation
- Prepare students to be confident musicians through a variety of performance opportunities.
- Maintain a highly trained staff of music teachers who are both great artists and teachers.
- Provide teacher training to our staff through professional learning initiatives, which inspire excellence, and creative thinking
- Promote cultural diversity and awareness
- Broaden the horizons for children who lack the opportunity to experience, learn music and derive the benefits from such an education