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Music Conservatory Of Westchester

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Arts & Culture, Arts Education, Health, Health Care, Performing Arts Schools

Mission: We believe in the inherent power of music to provide personal enrichment, creative expression, lifelong learning, cultural appreciation, and joy for everyone. Excellence - we strive to provide leadership and innovation in music education, encompassing high standards, best teaching practices and respect for individual differences. We seek to be a place where students of all ages and abilities grow through music and have the opportunity to develop their skills and talents to their greatest potential. Access - guided by our commitment to inclusiveness, we believe that financial limitations or differing ability should never be a barrier to learning. We take our programs into the community as necessary to ensure this. Community - we bring people together through musical collaboration, bridging differences, forging connections, and celebrating musical and cultural diversity.

Programs: Instruction - music conservatory of westchester was founded in 1929 in the american settlement house tradition of broad-based access and community service. Legendary cellist pablo casals was among its founders, and jazz legend cab calloway once served on its board. The conservatory's mission is to provide the extraordinary benefits of music to all in our community. Today, the conservatory provides quality music education for students of all ages, abilities and backgrounds, serving 2,800 children and adults annually from 4 months to over 80 years old. Our esteemed faculty is comprised of 74 professional musicians and 10 music therapists. Our music instruction program provides one-on-one instrumental and vocal lessons, performing ensembles, theory, composition, suzuki and early childhood classes, summer programs, lifelong learning for adults, and free community performances. The program serves 800 students in three semesters (fall, spring, summer) totaling 40 weeks, onsite in the conservatory building. Scholarships are provided for low income students, based on documented financial need. Recent conservatory alumni have completed professional music degrees at the juilliard school, oberlin conservatory, eastman school of music, the longhy school, and other renowned schools. Recent alumni pursuing a wide range of careers have graduated from mit, yale, columbia, rpi, haverford and many other top colleges and universities. Many scholarship recipients come from first-generation immigrant families and are the first in their families to attend college. Recent accomplishments include: a regional economic development grant award from new york state to create music technology-based teaching facilities in 3,500 square feet of unfinished space in our building; a national endowment for the arts grant award to create a multicultural music-themed public mural on the south-facing exterior wall of our building. One of only sixteen non-degree-granting schools nationwide to be accredited by the national association of schools of music, the conservatory has inspired generations of students, and contributed to a vibrant musical life in the county, the region and beyond.

outreach program - the conservatory's music therapy institute (mti) was established in 1986 in order to extend its programs to include individuals with disabilities. Today the program serves 1,900+ children and adults in outreach programs, in partnership with 30 organizations, including public school districts, special education programs, medical facilities, senior care centers, and social service agencies. The program also provides individual music therapy and adapted instrumental and vocal instruction onsite at the conservatory, serving 75 students annually in a designated music therapy department. Music sharing events take place 2-3 times a year, giving music therapy students an opportunity to share their music with family and friends. The music therapy institute has received the arts award for community from arts westchester, and has received seven consecutive awards from the american society of composers, authors and publishers (ascap). In 2013, mti established healing our heroes, providing tuition-free music therapy for us military veterans dealing with war-related injuries. Serving 15-20 veterans each year, the program provides each veteran with two years of weekly individual music therapy sessions, as well as weekly drop-in group sessions. Veterans music sharing events take place twice during the year. Healing our heroes is the subject of a documentary currently being filmed to raise awareness of the challenges faced by veterans dealing with the wounds of war as they struggle to readjust to civilian life.

performances - performance is an integral component of the conservatory's educational programs. Student and faculty performances take place at the conservatory and in the community. Students have opportunities to perform as soloists, and in performing ensembles. Faculty concerts offer an opportunity to hear high level professional performances in comfortable, familiar locations. All concerts are free and open to the public, taking place in the conservatory's recital hall as well as in local libraries, community centers, and other similar venues. Master classes are also scheduled at the conservatory in which selected students are coached by guest artist-teachers. In fy2016-2017, 70 student performances, 5 faculty performances, and 5 master classes took place, for a total of 80 performances.

Community Stories

11 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Volunteer

Rating: 5

The Music Conservatory of Westchester is an outstanding place with amazing faculty and staff that is second to none! I recently learned that it is one of the few accredited community music schools in the country!

Review from Guidestar

1

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

The Conservatory has been great for my daughter as she , unlike a portion of the students, is not super serious about music education. She enjoyed the atmosphere which is friendly and supportive. They seem to be able to cater to a very wide range of students with many types of programs. It is a kind of a home away from home.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

MCW has given my daughter a phenomenal base for what's become a major part of her life. She began as a flute student in the fourth grade. She has progressed to the point where she is being courted for two different bands at college.
She was part of the Musical Theater summer program at MCW when she was in middle school. That grew into fours years in High School of Chorus and Drama. She was part of eight productions in HS and a choral group that won gold medals in NYS competitions. In college, she is part of the University Chorus and is an assistant director at a local HS in their Spring musical show.
I'm very proud of what she's done with her musical talents and I'm very grateful to MCW for the guidance, direction and dedication it has provided her.

Previous Stories
1

Client Served

Rating: 5

My daughter, Peggy, started regular flute lessons one fall six years ago when a knee injury kept her out of soccer. I dreaded her reaction to this alternative to sports. However, once she started, she was itching to come back each week. She asked to be included in the music theory program. This all started an interest in music and the arts that continues to grow for Peggy, with her participation in band, chorus and the drama club at school and the choir at church. The faculty and the environment at the Conservatory encourage and develop the skills and knowledge of the students like no institution I've encountered before.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

My teenage son was struggling to balance his musical interests in classical music and popular music. At MCW he found outlets for both: he plays classical trumpet in a brass ensemble, he plays jazz and rock guitar in small group settings. He has individual instruction in both instruments as well.

MCW is a very supportive musical community where all types of music, and all types of students are welcomed.

1

Board Member

Rating: 5

The conservatory has become my son's musical home. Ever since he started on the recorder at age 6, the conservatory and it's staff has encouraged, nutured and directed his progress through individual lessons, musical education and ensemble performance. I see the conservatory's continuing mission of community clearly, as my son, now 14, begins to encourage new young musicians in the same manner he was encourage at the start. The conservatory is simply a wonderful place for all to experience the arts.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

Formerly a piano player, I started harpsichord lessons at the Conservatory 6 years ago as an adult student. The faculty and staff are superb--dedicated and caring. Coming from a therapy background, I am also very impressed with their music therapy institute. They are able to reach and to help a wide variety of children and adults. MCW is more than a music school, it is a wonderful, diverse community.

1

Board Member

Rating: 5

The Music Conservatory of Westchester is unlike any music, theater, or dance school you've ever seen. The faculty's philosophy is to nurture each and every student, no matter their age or ability level. They believe that everyone deserves a chance to make music. The faculty - in every instrument, plus voice - is eager to teach students from beginners to virtuosos. Integrity, superlative quality, and dedication are the hallmarks of this legendary nonprofit institution. Students' experiences are enhanced by the remarkable Conservatory facility. There are many universities that would be delighted to have such large, well-lit, brightly colored studios. And as soon as you enter the school's doors, the lobby's vibrant, warm colors welcome you as though you were family. The school's beautiful Recital Hall provides students with added motivation to master their repertoire. Regular performance opportunities, in a first-class concert space, plus remarkable, nurturing teachers, make the Music Conservatory of Westchester unique in the field of community schools of music nationwide.

1

Board Member

Rating: 5

The Music Conservatory of Westchester has been our music school for over 11 years. My son has had the same excellent piano teacher over the years and has had some amazing experiences including playing piano at Lincoln Center and Carnegie Hall. My younger son also started taking piano lessons last year and is thriving. Another great aspect of the school, in addition to its great faculty and superior facility, is the wonderful outreach programs which it provides.

1

Board Member

Rating: 5

the space is amazing, including a professional cocert auditorium . Many of the teachers have an active concertising career, Multiple opportunities to participate in recitals.Ensembles are available for a minimal additional fee. the staff are friendly and incredibly supportive.

1 nancy

Client Served

Rating: 5

I picked up the flute at age 54 after a 30 year hiatus. The Music Conservatory found me a great teacher and I now I can play even better than I did in my 20s. It's a wonderful warm place for kids and adults.