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River Ridge
(985) 590-4545
(985) 674-2992
(504) 738-3050
1111 Village Walk Rd
105 Campbell Ave #3
2020 Dickory Ave #200
Covington, LA
Mandeville, LA
Harahan, LA

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July 2016 Newsletter

Articles include, "Tears of Joy - Reflections on Student Accomplishments, Student News, Welcome to Our Newest Students, Happy July Birthdays, LAST CHANCE FOR SUMMER CAMP!, and more!"...

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Tears of Joy - Reflections on Student Accomplishments

Voice students at LAAPA singing together!

Dear Students and Parents,

I’d like to extend my congratulations to all of our students, parents, faculty, and staff for 12 outstanding music and dance concerts held the past two weekends in June. Watching you all use your talents and grow in your skills is truly the greatest part of my job here. It’s why I don’t mind lugging amps, a full drum set and hardware up and down a flight of stairs or watching nearly 500 performances within a span of 52 hours!

Just as the growth of a child is more apparent to those who see him/her less frequently, we as educators and parents need to stop sometimes and absorb all that has taken place! Just the other day I looked back at some old video footage of my long term students here at LAAPA and will admit that perhaps a tear or two of joy popped up when I realized how far they had truly come. I’m fairly certain that all of our faculty can share a similar story because as educators, we are always proud of what our students have accomplished and just when we think that we couldn’t be prouder, they top themselves again and again. Having personally watched thousands of performances over the years, seeing the evolution over the span of months and years is phenomenal. This is all because you and our amazing faculty members have worked hard to make it happen!

While we’re talking about lasting memories, footage from all of the concerts will be uploaded over the next few weeks in various places including our Facebook page at facebook.com/laapaface and our youtube channel at youtube.com/laapatube. Wally Porter also snapped thousands of LIVE ACTION photos during all twelve concerts and is posting them for parents/students to browse and purchase on his website at wallyporter.photoreflect.com.

So let’s summarize a few things that took place at our 2016 Spring Concerts!

1.) Our students have just built a great deal of self-confidence by performing on stage!

I always like to compare performing on stage with public speaking. Public speaking is many times feared more by most adults than almost anything else! With our student performers, we need to additionally recognize your courage and success because in most cases, you were not only “speaking publicly” through your performances, but you were doing so while still “learning how to speak” through the art of music and dance in your lessons! Wow! One can only imagine what you will continue to achieve with a growing sense of self-confidence.

2.) Our students have truly learned the importance of meeting deadlines.

No matter what you do in life, you’re going to be required to accomplish things by a certain date. All of our students knew when they needed to be ready for the recitals. There was no option to delay their performances. There was no option to perform without anyone hearing or seeing you. It took a great deal of commitment, sacrifice, and hard work in your studies and practice for you to succeed in meeting the deadline. So, congratulations on succeeding in this very important area!

3.) Our students have inspired many others in the audience who witnessed their talent.

Performing for any group of people is an emotional experience not only for our student performers but also for the audience as well. Audience members will appreciate the performance, but one never knows who in the audience will additionally be inspired to perhaps try a new program or work harder at one they are already studying. Indeed, it may have been your performance that convinced someone else to think, “Hey, that was awesome, maybe I CAN do something like that, and wouldn’t it be wonderful if next time that was me up there?!”

Congratulations again everyone! Remember that while all of our concerts are completely optional in terms of participation, they really are an integral part of music and dance education - so if you weren’t ready this time, be on the lookout for the next ones!

Ryan Cullen, Academy Director

Last Chance to win a Yamaha Digital Piano!

Thanks to everyone who continually refers the academy - it’s the highest compliment we can receive and truly appreciated!

If you refer a friend or colleague to LAAPA now through July 31, you and your friend will automatically be entered for a chance to win a brand new Yamaha Digital Piano - a $450 value!

Remember that everyone who refers a friend or colleague to the academy (who enrolls) receives a gift certificate for a complimentary lesson in the program of his/her choice!

Good luck!

* Immediate family members/members of the same household are not eligible for the referral program.

Student News

River Ridge School of Music & Dance student, Kyla Apostolakis, was selected to play “Shepherd Me Oh God” on piano in St. Benilde’s talent show on May 6.
Sameen Hossain was in vocal choir.
Michael Austin Verges designed an app and submitted it to the Apple World Wide Developer Conference for the 2016 student Scholarship and was selected as a winner! Over 1000 student groups from all over the world submitted apps for consideration and 350 were chosen. Michael Austin’s app is designed for singers so they can enter their vocal range and the app will help them warm-up. He traveled to California to attend the conference this past June and is pictured below with Apple CEO Tim Cook. Michael Austin takes voice and piano lessons with Ms. Rebecca at the Mandeville School of Music.
Brian Fink played the piano at Cafe Istanbul in New Orleans.
Kylie McKee has been a dance student at the River Ridge School of Music & Dance since January. She is a hard worker, and in just one month of dancing, she was put on one footed turns! She also dances competitively with a Bollywood group called Ruby’s Creative Dance. Their group won first place at the 2016 I Love Dance Competition in Houston, Texas. She has received superior student twice in just 4 months and is now our first class assistant (C.A.) for the Wednesday and Saturday pre-ballet classes.
Kaitlann Runnels on The Voice!

We love getting your news, success stories and comments. If you'd like to share your news with us, please e-mail studentnews@laapa.com. 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! Connect with us on Facebook at facebook.com/laapaface, youtube.com/laapatube, and now on Twitter at @laapatweets.

Happy July Birthdays!

We'd like to wish the following Students, Faculty, and Staff a very Happy Birthday this Month!

(Students) Alexandra Y. (17), Alexis N. (7), Allison B. (8), Anastasia B. (14), Angelina W. (7), Aria B. (3), Asa Z. (8), Audrey Lane C. (12), Boyu H. (9), Brady C. (7), Brian F. III (15), Carmen T. (11), Chloe C. (5), Christopher K., Christy H. (10), Claudia B. (9), Claudia D., Connor D. (10), David H. (9), Devin I. (9), Easton S. (3), Edir G., Elba M. (7), Elliott L. (10), Evelyn R. (7), Farren C. (5), Gabby R. (10), George G. Jr. (7), Gina R., Gracyn D. (10), Haley V. (9), Hannah P. (10), Harry H. (17), Hunter C. (7), Huy T. (5), Isabella L. (12), James H. (14), Jasmine B. (12), Jennifer G., Jordan P. (8), Joseline C. (6), Julian S. (12), Kai J. (9), Kaiya H. (8), Ka’Mi J. (8), Kate C. (12), Kate P. (15), Katelyn C. (15), Keith H., Kyla A. (8), Kylie S. (6), Landon P. (9), Lee K., Liam V. (7), Lizzy P. (14), Logan R. (8), Lucille C. (2), Luke M. (8), Lyla F. (7), Lylah C. (8), Madeline M. (16),
Maria G., Marie C. (12), Mary Grace M. (15), Matthew H. (7), Meghan T. (16), Miya D. (15), Monique V. (14), Nadia H. (11), Nate M. (8), Nicholas B. (10), Pamela K., Pat C., RJ H., Rowan H. (7), Sam P. (13), Saniya B. (15), Sankera B. (7), Sarah S. (17), Sylas B. (2), Tasneem B. (12), Tia S. (8), Trenton L. (15), Trey K. (9), Victoria G., Wendy K. (12), Wyatt I. (11)

(Faculty) Aaron B., Carolyn R., Jeannete P., Kanako F., Mirka J., Robin W., Ursula P.

Important Dates:

July 4-8

Summer Break

July 11-29
Summer Music Camp - Mandeville campus
Summer Music & Dance Camps - River Ridge campus

Summer Music & Dance Camps!
Explore, Create, Play...

New Orleans, Metairie, Mandeville Voice Lessons

Summer Camps will be held this July beginning the week of July 11. Students may choose to participate in 1, 2, or all 3 weeks!

Our Summer Camps provide all students ages 5-16 with a choice of over 30 instrumental, vocal, and performing arts programs to explore! Campers (even those with little or no music or performing arts background) are able to take a hands on approach and see what programs and instruments interest them! Perhaps your child has shown an interest in music, dance, piano, singing, guitar, violin, drums (just to name a few!)? Wherever his/her interest lies, we are happy to provide a formal introduction to the programs of your choice in a structured and fun environment!

Very Limited Space - only 25 campers enrolled each week. For more information or to enroll, visit www.laapa.com/camp or call (504) 208-02301.

As you can see, current student and former camper Jace C. gives LAAPA's summer camp two thumbs up, so reserve your spot today!

Sign Up for Summer Camp!

Music & Dance Artwork - Now Available Online!

You can now browse and purchase the beautiful Music and Dance artwork of local artist Michaela Howell in the LAAPA Store. Just goto http://store.laapa.com/art/. She is currently offering 10% off, so be sure to take a look soon!
Local artist, Michaela Howell has graciously decorated our schools with her music and dance themed artwork (just one example of which is pictured right). All of these pieces may be purchased for your home or as a gift! Please inquire at the front desk.
With down home country humble beginnings Michaela has always been very resourceful. She cuts, sands, primes, paints, and in some cases stains her abstract versions of the wooden instruments, creating very hands-on works of art. This resourcefulness has “Played” out very nicely in her most current work. Though the recycling of varying musical instrument components including guitar strings, violin knobs, music sheets featuring the instrument showcased, Michaela portrays a ‘current’ sense of style combined with a very vivid color pallet, creating a symphony for the senses!

Student of the Month - Jean Paul Civil

New Orleans, Metairie, Mandeville Voice Lessons

River Ridge School of Music & Dance student, Jean Paul Civil, takes piano and guitar lessons here at LAAPA! We recently had a chance to speak with him and learn a little more about his lessons and interests!

What lessons do you take at LAAPA?

I take piano lessons with Ms. Kanako and guitar lessons with Mr. Bill. I go to Theory Class every week too! I’ll be starting Hip-Hop class again soon. (Carla (mom): If we didn’t live so far away, we would be here 6 days a week!)

What are you doing in piano lessons and in guitar lessons?

In piano, I’m learning the flats and sharps, which together are called accidentals. I’m going to a piece with some accidentals soon. I recently learned about fermatas (*draws a fermata symbol in the air*), which tell you to hold a note or chord in the music. I’ve also been learning about dynamics, like crescendos and decrescendos, which tell you when to play soft and when to play loud!
In guitar, I’ve learned how to play “Mary Had a Little Lamb” and also the chords to Bill’s favorite song (“Iko Iko” by Dr. John). Guitar technique is different from piano; my fingers strum the guitar, but they tap the piano.

What else do you do outside of LAAPA?

I take taekwondo and play soccer. I also like to build stuff and help my mom and dad!

What do you want to be when you grow up?

I want to be a lot of things! A pianist, a doctor, an inventor…I’ve already got a cool idea for an invention: a one-man band. Basically, I build and wear a suit made out of instruments that can be played all together. When I hit a cymbal, a trumpet might blow, or a bell would ring. I also have a cool idea for a time-travel machine. But for now, I’m just going to practice my piano and guitar!

A HUGE welcome to our newest students who began lessons or added programs in June!

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

Abby T.
Aeris B.
Alexander S.
Alia E.
Alison Y.
Amelia S.
Angelle A.
Ansley S.
Aria B.
Ashley R.
Aubrey J.
Aurelia A.
Ava K.
Avi P.
Blaze C.
Brian J.
Cadence P.
Calvin T.
Catalina J.
Charlie H.
Chloe W.
Chloe S.
Christopher F.
Connor C.
Corbin G.
David P.
Dayana E.
Devaune R.
Di’Nika B.
Easton S.
(thanks to Zachary D.)
Edwin B.
Ella A.
Emily R.
Erika D.
(thanks to Alexander D.)
Farren C.
Glori S.
(thanks to Shea S.)
Hector Z.
Henri J.
Isabella P.
Jaci W.
Jack B.
Jackson W.
Jacob S.
James H.
Jax C.
Jonathan K.
Jonathan H.
Joseline C.
Jossy A.
Justin T.
Justin G.
Kimberly W.
Laney W.
Lauren L.
Lillian R.
Lily F.
Lizzy P.
Lucas N.
Marelin C.
Mary D.
Mary B.
McKenzie G.
Myles B.
Nicco O.
Nicholas N.
Nina M.
(thanks to Daniel M.)
Olivia W.
(thanks to Jessica M.)
Paige A.
(thanks to Kamryn T.)
Ryan O.
Rebecca D.
(thanks to Diana P.)
Regina R.
Ruston G.
Ryan A.
Ryne S.
Sara C.
Stuart G.
Tabitha B.
Veronica C.
Zoe C.

Student “Shout-Outs!”

“Blake is really enjoying his drum lessons and we love to see how LAAPA takes advantage of technology with the studio iPads and digital lessons via LessonMate.”=
~Scalia Family

“Race loves his piano lessons! MY older son has had Mr. Russell for five years and still really enjoys his piano lessons as well. Mr. Russell helps them to discover their interests. They always enjoy going to lessons because it’s not a chore and he makes playing the piano fun.”
~Hughes Family