l have taken both art and music classes for adults at CSMA over the last few years.I have enjoyed them all - the instructors are excellent and the scope of the courses is broad enough to cover all skill levels. I also participated in the World Harmony Chorus, which is a wonderful way to get the community singing, and have attended free concerts there as well. CSMA is a wonderful community asset and I look forward to taking additional classes there. I highly recommend it to everyone I know.
My name is Taylor Eigsti, and I am a professional jazz pianist who grew up in the Bay Area, CA. I first became involved with CSMA when I was 6 years old, taking jazz piano lessons with Randy Masters, along with some art classes at the same facility. I continued to take lessons there for about 7 or 8 years, and I was always surrounded by a real community of people who care about the students, and access to the arts for people of all ages. Every year more and more funding is cut for arts programs across the country, and it is a relief that a place like CSMA is not only going strong, but is constantly expanding and growing, with inspiring leadership and new directions. I just know that during my experience with CSMA, I grew so much as a musician and learned about both music and also the process of effectively teaching music. I attribute a great deal of any growth and success I've had as a performing musician to having CSMA in my life, where I was truly encouraged to keep playing music and I was surrounded by positivity. The Community School of Music and Arts helps so many people continue to develop in the arts, or take a brand new interest in learning about the arts, or pass along information to young people about exploring their imagination artistically. I sincerely hope that their visibility as an organization continues to rise, and that they will continue to be the Bay Area's foremost source of music education for many years to come.
I have been a CSMA supporter, volunteer, and contributor for more than 20 years. It has grown into a very competent, professional and successful organization that still retains a zeal for its mission and all of the best characteristics of a small, fun, friendly place to learn and work. A few months ago I helped "jury" art work produced by elementary school kids from CSMA's in-school arts program and, as always, was moved and hugely impressed by the quality and creativity CSMA is nurturing.
I had the unique perspective of being able to take lessons and classes as an "insider" during my four years of employment at CSMA. Over the years I found every teacher, every staff person, every Board member to be very kind-hearted and really dedicated to helping students learn about the arts. Also, if you've never been to the building, it's really unique and worth the trip. Even if your pocketbook is tight, it doesn't matter -- they have awesome financial aid and the one-on-one interaction with your teacher will make it worthwhile.
I have personally been involved with this organization for almost 10 years. My husband was involved with it for 5 -10 years before me. It is an exceptional nonprofit in all facets: personnel, resource management, responsable and active board, well-respected in the community, and high-quality in the value of programs delivered. In my profession I have had the opportunity to be onsite and work closely with more than 100 volunteer organizations. I've been en employee of nonprofits; a board member; a recipeint of services; a general volunteer; and a consultant to them. For an organization that started out of someone's back porch - it has grown to be a community leader. One that provides arts and music education; free performances; and a wide range of multi-cultural productions that reflect and improve our community. I am proud to recommend CSMA as an Outstanding Nonprofit.
I taught for CSMA before I became a board member. I was so impressed with the Kodaly curriculum and felt that the children loved the program and learned how to read music as well as enjoying the singing and rhythm activities. I love children and love music so it was a natural for me. I really enjoy being a board member. I was on the Capital campaign and developed a real pride in the new building. The people on the board are truly outsanding in their love and committment to the school. What a joy it is to work with such a fine organization that brings music and art to all.
As a long-time music educator, I applaud the role of the Community School of Music and Arts! Their commitment to serving all members of the community, regardless of age, prior experience or ability to pay is reflected in all of their programs. Students in the local schools receive the highest quality instruction in music and art. Students of all ages may enroll in lessons and classes at the new, state-of-the-art facility. The faculty and staff are professional and dedicated in every way. The concerts and events that are offered at the site are truly a treasure that enriches all. CSMA is a great asset to the the whole community.
Our family has been touched by a number of different facets of CSMA. Initially, my husband wanted to find a couple of musicians to play in a trio. He contacted CSMA and was placed with two others and a teacher. From that beginning, our two children have participated in numerous music and art camps and private piano, trumpet and sax lessons. They started attending CSMA as pre-schoolers and now are teenagers. They also have had art and music professionals from CSMA teach at their public schools. We truly believe in the "arts for all" mission of the school -- an art education should be available to any one who has interest.