There’s music in the air on the north end of Market Street where Cayman Music School and its team of talented professional musicians are teaching students young and old how to sing, dance or play an instrument.
Established in 2010 by professional musicians Andre and Inna Kazakova, Cayman Music School has an international flair. Andre and Inna are originally from Russia and their instructors come from countries near and far.
“We have teachers from all over the world,” says Andre, naming Russia, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Bulgaria, India, Cuba, Canada, the U.S. and Cayman as countries of origin.
“We try to get the best teachers,” says Andre. “Our teachers are also performers and most of them have their own CDs. Most of them have master’s degrees.”
Since methods of teaching music vary in different countries, Cayman Music School uses mixed instruction methods that work very well, Inna says.”Our methods are very unique.”
The school’s instructors teach many different musical instruments including piano, guitar, violin, cello, saxophone and drums.
For a drum instructor, Andre and Inna went in-house – literally – to their 20-year-old son Max.”I love what I do,” says Max. “I get to play drums and I get to teach. It’s really nice to see my work expressed through other people. It gives me a good feeling.”
Although the majority of the school’s students are children, many adults attend as well, mostly to learn to play guitar, piano or drums, or to take singing or dance lessons. Soon, students will also be able to take drama lessons.”We’re currently applying for a work permit for a drama teacher from the U.K.,” Inna says. Andre says the school accepts children into its “baby classes” from the age of 1 up until the age of 5.
“I think it’s very important to introduce children to playing an instrument when they are very young,” he says. “By the age of 5, they’re already ready for instruction lessons.”
Andre says a visiting Trinity College London examiner was recently very surprised that a 5-year-old Cayman Music School student passed a grade exam with merit, a testament to the student and the school’s instructors.
When learning an instrument, the focus with young students is on classical music. “That’s the foundation,” says Andre, adding, however, that the school also teaches other genres including rock, jazz and Flamenco.
The Cayman Music School offers full and partial scholarships for talented young Caymanians who show promise and dedication in music. It also offers an open annual voice training scholarship that is awarded to a young student through its “Magic Voice” scholarship programme. The scholarship winner is decided by a panel of Cayman Music School teachers who judge a singing audition.
“They can sing with or without background music,” Andre says.
This year, Magic Voice will take place on Saturday 27 May. The judges choose one performer based solely on talent to receive a full-year voice training scholarship. If others show singing distinction in their auditions, Cayman Music School can – and has in the past – offered partial scholarships to those who don’t win the full scholarship.
To participate, singers only have to contact the school and set up a time slot. If they can’t attend on 27 May for some reason, they can send a recording, Andre says.
For more information about Cayman Music School or the Magic Voice scholarship programme, email [email protected] or call 938-3838.