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Valley Conservatory turns Huntsville students into musicians

Valley Conservatory turns Huntsville students into musicians

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Valley Conservatory has been part of the classical music scene in the Huntsville area for more than two decades. It has a strong reputation as a center that offers instruction designed to develop all aspects of a student’s mind, body and character. Recently we had the chance to ask conservatory director, Renee Collins, a few questions about her business and how it’s gained such a great reputation among aspiring musicians and their parents.

Locations: 5650 Sanderson St. Ste. B, Huntsville and 5732 US Hwy 431 S. Brownsboro
Phone Number: 256-534-3131
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Q: Tell us your organization’s story. How did it come about? What need does your business fill in the community? What makes you unique?

Valley Conservatory is a music service center with programs designed to develop all aspects of a student’s mind, body and character. Conveniently located in Huntsville and Brownsboro, Valley Conservatory has provided services in the arts to the Huntsville/Madison County area since 1998. 
 Valley Conservatory believes music is an art and a science involving both left and right brain activity. Our programs incorporate the holistic approach to developing the total student through the medium of music. Our philosophy is that the aesthetic and technical aspects of music can be used to teach concepts and principles from academic, physical, spiritual and social realms.
 Conceptual thinking is essential to a complete music education experience. This philosophy gives teachers unlimited resources in conveying musical principals to the student. Teachers can utilize various standard teaching methods, or they can be unconventional and use the pattern of the tile on the floor to teach the musical form of a piece.  Holistic instruction enables the student to use mathematical concepts to figure out the meter or listen to the sounds of nature to understand the aesthetic beauty of a piece of music.
Students who learn to view music from a holistic perspective increase their creative and reasoning abilities. These strengths transfer to all areas of their lives.

Valley Conservatory offers:

  • Private and class instruction, pre-school through adult
  • Music Theater Classes and Performances
  • Music education programs, extra-curricular and academic
  • Arts learning and exploration through camps and workshops
  • Customized art experiences for after school programs
  • A Lyceum Concert series, Jam sessions and exhibits offered to the public
  • Valley Conservatory Booking Agency – Musicians for hire for any type of event or occasion

Our customized music and arts programs offer:

  • General music education for schools. Designed to meet requirements for an academic program where grades are administered.
  • Instrumental (band or strings) and choral programs.  Custom designed to meet the academic needs of a music education program for schools.
  • Arts education programs, academic or extra-curricular
  • Custom designed pre-school music program
  • Customized extra-curricular music/and or arts programs
Violin students practice at Valley Conservatory in Huntsville, AL.

The Valley Conservatory is an outgrowth of the vision I had as a child, wanting to create an atmosphere where kids that were similar to me could come together and enjoy a musical experience in an environment that was organized and conducive for learning. I moved to Huntsville 27 years ago. After working as the Music Director/Conductor of the Huntsville Youth Orchestra, and in the Music Department at Oakwood University as Assistant Professor in Piano and conductor of the Oakwood Symphony Orchestra, I started the Valley Conservatory.

All communities need the arts and a centralized place that fosters music education. The Valley Conservatory realizes this need and provides exposure to the arts to the Huntsville community. Since its inception in 1998, our school has provided music instruction and exposure in the classical arts to thousands of students and music lovers throughout the Tennessee Valley.

What makes us unique is that we are One Stop Shopping when it comes to providing services in the arts. In other words, we are the umbrella for the community when it comes to providing activity in the arts. Whether it is providing music instruction for students, a master class or a lyceum series concert we provide all of these services under one roof. Our holistic approach to music and how it relates to all disciplines of life creates an environment that is conducive for learning.

Q: What “problem” do you see in the community that you can solve for your customers? 

A: There are several solutions that our music education programs provide our customers. The number one problem we solve for our customers is time management. Most of our customers have more than one child in their families. Since we have several teachers in the studio in addition to providing instruction on several different instruments, families can have several children taking lessons from us at the same time which saves them time in their schedule.

Also, since we have several teachers, if there is a conflict in schedule or if it is not the right match with a teacher, they can try another instructor. This really is beneficial if you have students who may need a teacher who specializes in a different style of music. Another factor is safety. We take safety of our students very seriously, especially during these concerning times. We provide in-person and online lessons for our students. We provide a very safe environment for our students to take lessons by taking the temperatures of everyone who comes in, sanitizing after each student, requiring everyone to wear masks, cleaning the studio weekly and deep cleaning the studio once a month. In our piano studios we have 2 instruments in the room so that the teacher and student do not share the same instrument. We wipe down instruments after each use to ensure the safety of our students.

In addition, we operate like the doctor’s offices and have our parents wait in the car. They can zoom in on the student’s lessons and watch their child from their car. With the online lessons, we totally take the burden off of the student by providing them everything they need to have a successful lesson. All the student has to do is click a link to connect them to their lesson. They do not have to set up any accounts on their own.

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Q: Do you have any upcoming events, programs, or specials you’d like us to spotlight for readers?

A: We are currently running a special of FREE registration and 4 lessons for the price of 3. This is a $57.50 SAVINGS. Lessons in out studio run $110.00 a month for a weekly 30-minute lessons plus a $30 annual registration fee. The total cost to get started is $140.00 This special allows you to get started at $82.50. This is a great deal for parents who are looking for an avenue to get their children started on their musical journey. Parents who would like to sign their children up for lessons can call us at 256-534-3131. One of our friendly team members will be happy to register your child for lessons over the phone so they can begin their musical journey today!

Q: What advice can you offer parents who are looking for ways to supplement their child’s educational journey?

A: Get to know what interests your child. Look for things that your child excels in or that they enjoy. When you find what that is, find activities for them to do that will develop that interest. If it is an arts activity like music or dance, you may want to explore finding a school and/or teacher who you feel will meet the needs of your child. Do some research about the school and teacher to make sure they meet the requirements that you are looking for and fit your budget.

Keep in mind that readiness and intellect are two different things. A child can be gifted but not ready (meaning not old enough) for a specific activity. Another thing to consider with children is their motor skill development. Your child may intellectually understand what is going on but may have issues with their motor skills. This is often common in learning to play an instrument. Depending on the child, their fine motor skills may not have fully developed to where they can do the task. In situations like this, parents must be patient and allow their child the opportunity to develop at their own pace. Children can sense when their parents are anxious which can cause them to become anxious. There has to be a balance of encouraging your children, teaching them to be responsible but not pressuring them to excel beyond what they are capable of doing.

The educational journey for your child can be an exciting time. The key is to find what interests your child and/or engage them in activities that you feel will enhance their overall development. Approach the activity with balance of responsibility and fun. You want your children to enjoy what they are doing but also learn the responsibility that goes along with the activity.


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