School of Rock

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Just imagine: loud rhythmic sounds emerging into notes, the mind opening its senses, the heart feeling the pulse of music. The Rio Grande Valley has been inaugurated into the rock ‘n’ roll map of education. Welcome to the School of Rock!

With over 300 schools nationwide and ties to the renowned Berklee School of Music and Atlantic Records, the School of Rock was established in Chicago in 1998. Previously, SOR did not consider the RGV because of a fear of lack of public interest.

Owner Leo Salazar was determined with his dream and changed that idea with his vision: he bought the rights to the SOR franchise in August 2019, launching the birth of the school in McAllen.

“The goal is getting students ready for the stage and giving them the experience of a lifetime,” said music director JJ Gomez.

The school is based around rock music and a “song first” curriculum, which means that at the end of the day, the students will be able to play songs from favorite rock gods such as Black Sabbath, Led Zeppelin, Queen, and many more.

In these unprecedented times, the school has still managed to proceed with success — despite the pandemic. Six talented local musicians educate over 70 students ranging from ages 4 to 104. Along with teaching music theory, techniques, modes, and scales, the purpose is to help the students learn life lessons.

“It’s honestly great to see all of our students grow as musicians,” Salazar said.

Security is a top priority at the school. Upon arriving, guests are greeted with a welcoming environment in the front lobby with a monitored view of all classrooms in progress. The facility consists of a two-story building with designated rooms, a performance stage, and a safe student-only hangout area to increase comradery and creativity.

Additionally, one-on-one in-house or School of Rock remote Zoom classes are available for these future musicians. Students can take classes for vocals, guitar, piano and drums as well as stage performance.

Currently, the first-year school is offering a free 30-minute trial, open to anyone who is interested in enrolling. Eventually, novice students will get to showcase what they have learned in a concert among their peers. For those more advanced, an opportunity to join the House Band will be offered and possibly a tour.

During these uncertain times, the doors of the School of Rock are now open and in session. What better way to get our children involved in the most universal language of the world and a great music-rich environment?

For more info, visit www.mcallen.schoolofrock.com or call (956) 687-7625. School of Rock is available for classes from 3 to 9 p.m. Monday through Friday and noon to 6 p.m. Saturdays.

Are you ready to rock? #JoinTheConversation at facebook.com/rgvisionmagazine.