It seems it should be a simple task to answer why music is so important, but it’s rare that we actually stop to think about how it really fills our lives. Since ancient times the sounds around which we’ve gathered in the name of community, spirituality, ritual, and celebration, is music. It is the evocation of emotion, power, and drama in many areas of life; triumphant or melancholic, music brings the world and human emotion to life in ways that no other human creation can.
Plato said “ music gives a soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination and life to everything.”
Powerful as it is, music is not esoteric but part of existence for the joy and inspiration of all.
Large segments of our society are beginning to lose sight of the importance of music in every day life and instead relegating it to pop culture. Children, on the other hand, understand music instinctively. Whether it be a toddler moving his head in perfect rhythm, a young child beating on a makeshift drum, or a group of young people singing without fear of being heard, they possess a natural rhythm, a dance choreographed by the heart alone, that adults have difficulty recreating, but by which they are absolutely delighted.
A child’s channels of comprehension are untainted and wide open, and as they grow we slowly lead them to close these channels and instead utilize only those that allow for logic and pragmatism. The arts are not a priority and are whittled away by legislation year after year. Music and creativity, in terms of imagination, awaken not only our creative selves, but also our mathematical and scientific selves.
Einstein said: “Imagination is more important than knowledge. For knowledge is limited to all we now know and understand, while imagination embraces the entire world, and all there ever will be to know and understand.”
As music and arts programs become less accessible to kids, a greater need for grass roots programs exists. Our education system does not value the power music has to help children learn and become confident students, and private instruction and camps are out of reach for many families. We want music to be attainable to all children in the community, and it’s for this reason that we’ve created the New Mexico Academy of Rock and Blues (NMARB).
New Mexico Academy of Rock and Blues
At NMARB, our mission is to create a program for creativity that is affordable to all families, and our ultimate goal is for students to attend on a scholarship basis making it entirely free to all participants. This is why we put together fundraisers; it’s our community effort to create a space that doesn’t exclude anyone merely based on finances.
Our instructors are not only APS educators but also some of the Southwest’s most talented musicians, like Reviva’s Glenn “Buddha” Benavidez and Singer/Songwriter Keith Sanchez. We also bring in New Mexico’s renowned poets, such as Albuquerque Poet Laureate Jessica Helen Lopez, Swimming With Elephants publisher and APS teacher Katrina Guarascio, and nationally published poet Zachary Kluckman.
We know that music is not just about the sounds created, but the creative expression they shape. Be it though lyrical execution, composition, or instrumental mastery, we want kids to express their true selves as they build their musical ability, their self-esteem, their ability to work as a team, and their confidence.
As the inimitable wizard Albus Dumbledore said, “wiping his eyes,” “ah music, a magic beyond all we do here”.
Music is more than sound through an instrument; it is a conveyer of hope, an architect of confidence, a collector of memories, and a painter of the human soul.
NMARB Summer Music Camp will be held July 14-18 at The Cell Theatre in Albuquerque. The program is offered to children ages 8-18. For more information on how your child can attend camp, please visit www.nmarb.com or email firstname.lastname@example.org
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