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Covington School of Music


Mandeville School of Music 985.674.2992

River Ridge School of Music & Dance




2013 Faculty Seminar Report
Cara Williams named 2013 "Teacher of the Year"

Rock Band and Jazz Band Classes in Mandeville, Covington, and New Orleans, LA

Since 1978, it has been our mission here at LAAPA "to instill a lifetime appreciation for the performing arts within each student." This is a mission that we have taken very seriously since we began serving the New Orleans community so many years ago.
One of the many ways that we are able to keep our mission alive is through our continual faculty and staff educational seminars and meetings. It is of the utmost importance to all of us at LAAPA that we provide our Faculty and Staff with the very best tools and up-to-date information so that they in turn are able to provide our students with the music and/or dance education that they will come to find truly indispensable.
During our Administrative Planning and Development days this past August, our entire Faculty and Staff from all three campuses gathered together in the LAAPA Performance Hall at the River Ridge School of Music & Dance campus to network, share, and learn about the needs of our students here at LAAPA.
School Director, Ryan Cullen, opened the seminar and presented on a number of topics which included, "The Evolving Student", "2013 Facility Improvements", "iPad Training", and "Twenty Teaching Strategies for Students".
Covington and Mandeville Schools of Music faculty member, Josh Theriot (2012 Teacher of the Year), gave a presentation entitled, "Stealing Second" referencing baseball and the many small achievements and details needed to obtain the desired final outcome.

Faculty member, Carolyn Russell of the Covington and Mandeville Schools of Music, provided the faculty with a tremendous amount of pedagogical resources in her presentation which was entitled, "Building Relationships Through Effective Music Lessons."

River Ridge School of Music and Dance faculty member, Mark Monistere, shared his very powerful and motivational presentation entitled, "Dedication Through Inspiration". His numerous topics included, "What Makes a Great Music Teacher", "Creating an Atmosphere for Success", and "Putting the 'Fun' in Fundamentals."
Faculty member, Katarina Boudreaux, of the River Ridge School of Music & Dance and the Mandeville School of Music, shared an intriguing presentation entitled, "But, I Don't Want To..." which discussed how we as educators can help our students to overcome psycological barriers which may otherwise prevent them from getting the most out of their music and dance lessons.
Finally, Cara Williams, faculty member of the Covington and Mandeville Schools of Music engaged the faculty/staff with her presentation entitled, "The Dynamic Studio." Cara showed the faculty how easy it is to personalize lessons and make even the least entertaining fundamentals enjoyable and special. She also discussed the importance of Parent/Teacher communication since children are not always the most forthcoming in terms of sharing information, i.e. "What did you do today in your lesson? "Nothing...".
Following all presentations, the Faculty/Staff were asked to vote and select our 2013 Teacher of the Year based of his/her presentation and teaching successes which was quite a challenge based on the numerous amazing faculty presentations this year. We are very proud to congratulate Ms. Cara Williams for achieving this prestigious title for 2013.
You can watch a brief portion of each faculty member's presentation below!
Piano Lessons in Mandeville, NOLA, and Covington LA


October 1-30
Jazz Band Tryouts (Mandeville School of Music)
October 21-26
Bring a Friend Week
October 31
Halloween Holiday (No Classes)


Mandeville Voice Lessons Students

Mandeville Guitar Lessons Student JoshuaMandeville School of Music student Joshua Owens traveled in May to North Carolina to receive a medal as part of Duke's Talent Identification Program Grand Recognition Ceremony.

Joshua took the ACT test last year as a seventh grader and scored a 30. He is pictured at Cameron Indoor Stadium on Duke University's campus. Joshua has studied guitar with Ben Hurst since January of 2012 and credits Mr. Ben for making lessons fun while still encouraging improvement.

Covington School of Music students Alexandra Bowers and Michael Russell (pictured above) sang at Southeastern Louisiana University with over 250 other High School students from across the state of Louisiana as well as SLU's music

They were part of SLU's Honors Concert and masterclasses. Michael sang Bass II and Alexandra sang Soprano II in the concert. Dr. Alyssa Rowe was the conductor for the concert.

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Bring a Friend to Your Music Lessons and Dance Classes!

Bring a Friend to share in your Music Lesson or Dance Class during the week of October 21-26 and you and your friend could each win $100 in cash!
To be sure you and your friend are entered for a chance to win, just pick up a "Bring a Friend Week" invitation form available from your teacher and/or the front desk, complete all requested information on the invitation, and drop it off with your friend at the front desk on the day your friend comes and visits!
The lucky student and his/her friend will be announced via our Facebook page (be sure to like us) on Monday October 28!


River Ridge School of Music & Dance Students of the Month

Covington School of Music students, Charles and John Frederick Escher take piano and drum lessons here at LAAPA! We recently had a chance to speak with them and learn a little more about their lessons and interests!

Questions for Charles:

How long have you been taking piano lessons? I have been taking piano lessons for a month.
What kind of music do you listen to? I like rock and roll music.
What are your favorite songs to play? I like the songs in my practice book.
Do you play any other instruments? I also like to practice the drums.

Questions for John Frederick:

How long have you been taking drum lessons? I have been taking lessons for a year and a half.
What kind of music do you listen to? I like Kiss, Iron Maiden, and Michael Jackson.
What is your favorite part of your lesson? I like using the iPad.
How do you have fun practicing the drums at home? I like to have concerts in my room!

Question for Julie (parent):

Why did you choose LAAPA for your children's piano and drum lessons?
I kept seeing the LAAPA information in a local advertisement booklet, but I was reluctant to call because John Frederick has a disability and I was afraid the school would say no but now I know choosing LAAPA was the best decision for both of my boys. The faculty, staff, and other students have been wonderful. Their teachers (Josh and Reid) are enthusiastic and professional and Josh has been very accomodating to John Frederick's special learning needs.

For more news, photos and videos, please be sure to VISIT AND LIKE OUR FACEBOOK PAGE at FACEBOOK.COM/LAAPAFACE!


"Ms. Cara is such a wonderful person and teacher! She has gone above and beyond for me! She has not only been wonderful in class, but she has also helped me with my resume and my auditions. Ms. Cara and I will be a team for a long time to come!"

~ Blakely S.

"Ms. Katarina is my inspiration. She is so independent and she helped me see my goals and true potential. I thought I couldn't sing or play, but because of her amazing capability to believe in me, I found something to call my own."

~ Cameron E.

We love getting your news, success stories and comments. If you'd like to share your news with us, please e-mail Please note that we are now publishing our newsletters monthly, and if you don't see your submission in this edition, it will be published as soon as space is available!


As Fall begins, many of our teachers are already nearly or totally booked! If you need a schedule change or would like to be added to a waiting list for a particular teacher, day, or time, please
contact any of our office staff team and they can add you to the waiting list. There are still limited lesson spots available for October and/or November.

To inquire about openings for October and/or November, send an email to or call one of our locations: (504) 738-3050 for River Ridge, (985) 674-2992 for Mandeville, and (985) 590-4545 for Covington. Here's just a partial list of who's currently full at all campuses:


Kathleen: WED 1 spot! TU –BOOKED!
Cara: MON, TU, WED, FRI, SAT –BOOKED! Bonnie: MON & SAT 1 spot! WED, TH, FRI – BOOKED!
Jennifer: MON –BOOKED!
Russell: TH 1 spot! MON & WED –BOOKED!
Meredith: MON, TU, TH –BOOKED!
Katarina: TU, WED,TH, SAT –BOOKED!
Meghan: FRI 1 spot! WED & SAT –BOOKED!
Rebecca: MON & WED 1 spot! TU, TH, FRI –BOOKED!
Carolyn: MON & TU 1 spot! WED & FRI –BOOKED!
Daniel: TU, WED, FRI 1 spot! TH –BOOKED!
Bethany: TU 1 spot! WED, TH, SAT –BOOKED!
Victoria: Mon & SAT 1 spot!
Jessica: TU & WED 1 spot!
Mirka: TU 1 spot!
Catherine: SAT –BOOKED!


Bill: FRI 1 spot! WED & SAT –BOOKED!
Curtis: MON, TU, FRI 1 spot! WED & TH –BOOKED!
Josh: TH 1 spot! MON,TU, WED, SAT–BOOKED!
Ben: MON 1 spot! TU, TH, FRI, SAT –BOOKED!
Adam: MON 1 spot!


Kate: MON 1 spot!
Gabriel: MON 1 spot!
Simona: SAT 1 spot! MON, WED, TH – BOOKED!
Denise: MON & TH 1 spot! WED –BOOKED!
Vanya: MON & SAT 1 spot!


Reid: TU, TH, FRI 1 spot! MON, WED –BOOKED!
John: MON 1 spot!
Mark: TU 1 spot!


We are so happy that you’ve chosen to study at LAAPA. 
We know you will do great things this year!

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Congratulations to Simona Gronic and Vitalie Gumeniuc (faculty members at LAAPA pictured below) who were recently married this past August!


River Ridge School of Music & Dance faculty member, Maggie Probst will be performing October 11th at 8pm and October 13th at 2:30pm at the Mahalia Jackson Theater with the New Orleans Opera Chorus in "Der Vampyr" by Heinrich Marschner. You can also catch her at Rock 'N' Bowl in New Orleans with Spencer Wiggins October 5th at 8pm at the Ponderosa Stomp.

Louisiana Academy of Performing Arts & Louisiana Philharmonic Violinist Kate WithrowRiver Ridge School of Music & Dance faculty member, Kate Withrow, will be performing with the Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra as follows:

Band Together, a special program for High School students 8:00 PM on October 5 at the Saenger Theater.
Beethoven and Blue Jeans concert (Beethoven Symphony No. 5) 7:30 PM on October 18 at the First Baptist Church in Kenner.
Beethoven Piano Concerto No. 4 and Mozart
Symphony No. 39 7:30 on October 24 at Mahalia Jackson.
The Music of Psycho 7:30 on October 26 at Mahalia Jackson.

Mandeville Lakefront Park - Free Concert October 27 5 PM.

Louisiana Academy of Performing Arts & Louisiana Philharmonic Violinist Kate WithrowKatarina Boudreaux (faculty member at the River Ridge and Mandeville campuses) will be performing on Saturday October 19th 8-9 PM with singer, Michael Allen Zell at the Dance Quarter 1719 Toledano St. in New Orleans.

You can also catch her new Tango band, "Orquesta Fleur" at Cafe Istanbul on Saturday, October 26 from 8-10 PM.






Take Music Lessons and Dance Classes with us at the Louisiana Academy of Performing Arts!


Enjoying your experience at LAAPA?


If you have a friend who might like to take lessons, if you refer them to LAAPA and they enroll, we'll give you a gift certificate for a free lesson! It's very easy to refer someone. Just visit:

Type in your name, their name and their contact information and we'll take care of the rest! There's no maximum to the amount of free lessons that you can receive! We’re so glad that you’re with LAAPA and this is just our way of saying THANKS!