HSM Beginners - Music Classes for First-Time Learners

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Classes take place at the George and Joyce Wein Jazz & Heritage Center

Classes take place at the George and Joyce Wein Jazz & Heritage Center

Expanding our programs to give more kids the gift of music.


Heritage School of Music Expands
New Classes for Younger, First-Time Learners – With Instruments Provided

“Expanding our programs to give more kids the gift of music.”

The New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Foundation proudly announces a major expansion of its free music education program, the Don “Moose” Jamison Heritage School of Music. For the first time, we will host classes for first-time learners – kids who have never had the opportunity to study music.

We’re also lowering the eligible age to participate from 10 to 8. And - for the first time - we will provide instruments.

Our new classes for beginners will be held on Tuesdays, from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m., at the George and Joyce Wein Jazz & Heritage Center starting Nov. 8. Applications are being accepted through Nov. 2.

Classes will not be limited to students who lack instruments. Kids who own an instrument but have had less than one year of instruction may sign up to attend the Tuesday HSM BEGINNER classes, which will be open to kids between the ages of 8 and 17.

Instruments we teach include: Piano, drums, bass, guitar, trumpet, trombone, clarinet, flute and saxophone. We do not currently teach voice; those interested in singing are encouraged to apply for our beginner piano classes.

To apply, parents or guardians of eligible students must complete an online application form. Prospective students and their parents or guardians may be invited for an interview to determine their eligibility.

Apply using the online registration form here.

If all available spots in the program are not filled after the interviews, we will add new students on an ongoing basis.

Since 1990, the Heritage School of Music has been the Jazz & Heritage Foundation’s principal education program. It provides free music instruction for kids from throughout the greater New Orleans region, with classes on Thursdays and Saturdays taught my some of New Orleans’ best jazz musicians. The Heritage School currently serves more than 100 students each week.

For most of its history, the Heritage School operated as a guest on the campuses of local universities and other schools.

When the Jazz & Heritage Foundation opened its new state-of-the-art education and community facility, the George and Joyce Wein Jazz & Heritage Center, the Heritage School took up residence in its first-ever permanent home.

To date, Heritage School students have been required to be at least 10 years old, to have completed at least one year of prior instruction and to own their own instruments.

Now that the Jazz & Heritage Center is open, the Heritage School is expanding to provide new opportunities for students as young as age 8, who have never studied music and who do not own an instrument.

“When we opened our beautiful new center, we knew that along with this resource came a responsibility to do more to serve our community,” said Don Marshall, Executive Director of the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Foundation, which is the nonprofit that owns the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival presented by Shell. “We are very excited about expanding our programs to give more kids the gift of music.”

Thanks to successful fundraising – including a grant of $20,000 from the Country Music Association Foundation and $10,000 from a New Orleans charity, Local Hands Helping Local Children – the Jazz & Heritage Foundation has purchased more than 70 new instruments for the beginner classes that will start in November. These instruments include: keyboards, drum pads, trumpets, trombones, clarinets, flutes, alto saxophones, electric guitars and electric basses.

If you have questions, please contact the Heritage School of Music by sending an email to programs@jazzandheritage.org, or by calling (504) 558-6112.

This program is generously supported by the Country Music Assocation Foundation.


Support the Foundation
The New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival and Foundation, Inc.