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From the garage to the stage

Snow flurries and a disagreeable dip in temperatures last weekend didn’t stop a group a young musicians from playing their hearts out on stage Saturday at the Park City Education Foundation’s Running with Ed fundraiser.

The event featured a full lineup of youth performers, among them a group of students that have honed their skills and collaborated with one another as part of the local garage-band incubator, MusicGarage.org.

MusicGarage.org was created by musician, composer and producer Steve Auerbach. It’s designed to allow intermediate and advanced musicians to rehearse together and eventually form their own groups with guidance from experienced instructors.

"It isn’t a program per se, it’s more of a musicians’ community," Auerbach explains. "It’s basically a rehearsal and performance service."

Auerbach developed and managed several local after-school music programs for the Paul Green School of Rock before launching MusicGarage.org last August. For the past year, he has provided Summit County programs in conjunction with Park City School District’s Community Education department.

MusicGarage.org encompasses JazzGarage, RockGarage, MetalGarage and BluesGarage. Students who participate in after-school programs rehearse together once a week for 10 weeks and pay $10 per session. At the end of the 10 weeks, they perform live at a local venue.

Young musicians must be in private lessons or get an instructor’s approval to participate. It’s actually a beneficial program for private teachers, Auerbach says, because they can refer their students without losing them to music schools or other programs.

This summer, MusicGarage.org will offer three one-week JazzJamCamps and three one-week RockJamCamps for students up to age 18 in Summit County. Programs are open to intermediate-level musicians who have the skills to play in an ensemble. The camps will be held at Lee Music, 55 South 100 West in Heber.

Each camp runs for four hours per day and includes rehearsals, jam sessions, organizational time, workshops and music-related activities featuring different facilitators for different subjects.

"Summer camps are designed to give people a weeklong, structured, extensive experience. It has huge educational value, but it’s meant to be fun and recreation," Auerbach says.

Auerbach will teach the local camps with Rob Hyatt, a jazz musician, music educator and music software designer, and Woody Adler, a former School of Rock All-Star who is currently attending the Berklee College of Music in Boston.

Guest presenters and other MusicGarage.org instructors will also be involved in teaching a variety of workshops including audio technology, recording, and how to protect your ears while listening to loud music. "There’s a whole cast of people we’re working with. We have an amazing population of highly skilled musicians here [in Utah]," Auerbach says.

All camps will conclude with Friday evening concerts-slash-barbeques for participants and their families.

MusicGarage.org is also partnering with Mountain Town Music in order to provide performance opportunities for young musicians. "Mountain Town Music is the coolest concept," Auerbach says. "How many cities have something like that?"

Students from each camp will have the opportunity to schedule extra rehearsals and perform live on stage during the Frontier Bank Community Concert Series at Deer Valley. RockJamCampers are slated to perform on Aug. 25 and JazzJamCampers are slated to take the stage Sept. 1.

In addition to its summer camps, MusicGarage.org will offer weekly two-hour jam sessions for students in Summit County starting in July. The program will be a less-intensive version of the after-school sessions and the cost will be $225 for 10 weeks. Participating musicians will have the same opportunities as campers to play at Deer Valley.

Young musicians involved in MusicGarage.org programs are scheduled to perform at various other venues this summer as well, including the Desert Rocks Music Festival this weekend in Moab, the Way Out West Music Festival at Snowbasin and the Utah Arts Festival.

Auerbach sums up the success of the program over the past year in a few words: "I think we’re on to something good."

For details about summer camps and other programs, visit http://www.musicgarage.org , call (801) 577-2263, or search for MusicGarage on Facebook.

Summer camps

JazzJamCamps

June 28-July 2, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

July 19-July 23, 2 p.m. to 6 p.m.

Aug. 3-Aug. 6, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

JazzJamCamps

June 28-July 2, 2 p.m. to 6 p.m.

July 19-July 23, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Aug. 2-Aug. 6, 2 p.m. to 6 p.m.


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