The Silverlake Conservatory of Music

Photo credit Samantha Page

Founded in 2001 and backed by the vision of Michael “Flea” Balzary, bassist of the rock band Red Hot Chili Peppers, the Silverlake Conservatory of Music was established to fill a void that was felt in the community by offering private instrumental lessons, group classes, and summer camps to people of all ages.
The mission statement of the music school pledges to enrich the artistic landscape of Silverlake:

The mission of the Silverlake Conservatory of Music, a nonprofit org, is to facilitate basic music education.  Our primary focus us on the youth of the community but all are welcome and encouraged to participate.  The conservatory offers private music lessons at a reasonable cost and grants scholarships to children in need, providing free lessons and instruments.  The study of music enriches the life of the student as well as the community and society.

The studio, open seven days a week, serves an impressive roster of 600 students, many on scholarship.  On a given evening, waiting parents and students litter the conservatory’s lobby and spill out onto the sidewalk of nearby Sunset Junction and Intelligentsia coffee house.  Through the hum of activity in the lobby, only whispers of music can be heard leaking beyond the eight soundproof (and air conditioned) studios.
The Silverlake Conservatory gees well beyond traditional band and orchestral repertoire: the youngest children from four to six years old can begin their music education in “Rhythm Nation,” an introduction to rhythm and playing music with others; older students learning blues, reggae, rock, and funk perform at Amoeba Music.  Singers can join Glee Club, and aspiring songwriters can compose music for their own band and perform it at a summer concert.  Individual lessons, taught by professional musicians, are offered for $30/half hour or $60 per hour are offered on most instruments and voice.