Facility Spotlight: “It’s a Lively Place–the Energy is Palpable”

David Johnston

Bloomingdale School of Music


Our spotlight series continues with Bloomingdale School of Music, the third of our Con Edison Residency host organizations. We are very excited to introduce this new partnership. With so many musicians and artists living along the western corridor of Manhattan and in the Bronx, Bloomingdale’s Upper West Side location is ideal. But much more important than location are the School’s values and musical community. Lawrence Davis, Executive Director, shares his personal reflections:

“In describing Bloomingdale School of Music, the first thing I like to talk about are the students who go here.  I am fond of saying ‘any words you can use to describe any New Yorker you can say about Bloomingdale’s students.’ We proudly say we have the most diverse student body in the City of New York. Within blocks of the school we have some of Manhattan’s richest neighborhoods and some of the poorest neighborhoods as well. We make a substantial financial and programmatic commitment to give access to music to all who seek it, regardless of financial circumstance.

Our faculty is at the core of the work we do and we have worked hard to assemble an extraordinary group of 54 men and women who are both qualified and caring.  Over 75% of the faculty hold masters degrees and 30% hold doctoral degrees.

The best way to understand Bloomingdale is to look at what we do.  We have over 700 students studying 25 different musical instruments, we have fifteen chamber music ensembles, three orchestras, a percussion ensemble, a jazz ensemble, and a rock band.  We have classes for toddlers and adults as well, including my favorite–‘Piano for Absolute and Utter Beginners.’ We also have a 20-year old program to provide training and guidance on the precollege level to talented, motivated students who wish to study music at the college level.

We are a performing school, presenting over 80 free concerts every year. Our lively website www.bsmny.org includes a whole section called “Exploring Music” with lots of interactive features on a variety of musical topics.

All of this activity takes place in our 100 year old brownstone on West 108th Street, with 14 studios, a small concert hall, a waiting area, and offices.  It’s a lively place–the energy is palpable. In short, Bloomingdale is a musical community. We are proud to be collaborating with Exploring the Metropolis for their exciting composer residency program.”

Less than 4 weeks left to apply for the 2012 Con Edison Musicians’ Residency! Download the guidelines and applications and sign up for our twice-monthly e-newsletter for reminders, updates and news.


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