Aspen Music Fest finishes the school year with free concerts and showcases |

Aspen Music Fest finishes the school year with free concerts and showcases

Staff report
Roaring Fork Vlaley students preforming at the Maroon Bel Canto Children's Chorus Showcase on April 25 at Harris Hall.
Courtesy photo

The Aspen Music Festival and School will mark the finale of its AfterWorks programs for Roaring Fork Valley youth with a free Beginning Strings Showcase at Harris Concert Hall on Friday.

In collaboration with local schools, the Music Fest’s rapidly growing outreach program provides music education — either in school or after school — for elementary, middle and high school students throughout the valley.

AfterWorks programs include lead guitar, designed to teach students to read music and play guitar in a classical style; the Maroon Bel Canto Children’s Chorus, offering elementary and middle school students the opportunity to participate in a large ensemble setting without having to leave the valley; and Beginning Strings, to train students on string instruments through group and private lessons, performance opportunities, master classes, ensemble playing and beginning work in chamber music.

Students rehearse weekly at their local schools during the academic year, then come together to perform and share what they have learned.

The Lead Guitar Showcase and Maroon Bel Canto Children’s Chorus Showcase were held last month.

During the school year, Beginning Strings served 107 students in seven valley elementary schools. Lead Guitar served 88 students in after-school programs in four schools, and 215 students with in-school programs in an additional four schools. It has been a record year for student enrollment and school participation in Maroon Bel Canto Children’s Chorus, with 203 students in the program at 10 valley schools (up from only 110 students in 2016).

Tuition for the three programs ranges from $180 to $275 for the 20-week school year.