I was about thirteen years old when I started taking music lessons at Elite Music Academy in Toronto. Having lived near Danforth Ave my whole life, I had passed by the school many times, but it wasn’t until my parents signed me up for drum lessons that I actually stepped inside. The first thing I noticed was the warm and welcoming atmosphere. My new drum teacher was an inspirational figure for me and many other students still to this day. Since then, I have taken drum lessons, drum master classes, bass lessons, jam sessions, and last but certainly not least, Rock Camp. These programs are not only fun, engaging and educational, but they also embed many important values and skills in students such as teamwork, commitment, perseverance, and time management.
I am 18 now and I have worked both as a councilor at Elite’s summer Music Camp and a retail associate at the Pape-Danforth location. I can tell you from more than five years of first-hand experience that Elite Music Academy is not just a retail store and lesson space, but a musical community – a place where people can be inspired. The warm, friendly atmosphere and supportive staff allow students to explore unique and exciting creative avenues that they otherwise may not have had the confidence to pursue. What I took away from growing up in the Elite Music community was not only musical skill and theoretical knowledge, but character, determination, and an overwhelming sense of belonging. As a part of this vibrant community, I take it as my personal responsibility to make sure that anyone coming through our doors (including students, parents, customers and teachers) experiences this community in the same way that I have for all these years.