PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — What started as a small piano studio in a basement has grown into two large studios, with a third on the way later this year, as the Arts Academy trains young musicians at multiple locations across the metro area.
After starting very small more than a decade ago, the studio has expanded in a big way.
“We actually started the school in my parent’s basement. We had two kids in diapers,” said Arts Academy owner David Martin. “We were trying to figure out what to do with our lives.”
Martin said they kept growing until opening a proper studio in Happy Valley several years ago. But when the pandemic hit, they began offering free lessons online.
“We thought if we can at least keep students taking lessons with us maybe at some point they’ll want to turn that into one-on-one lessons,” he said.
And that’s exactly what happened.
The Arts Academy received so much interest, that they just recently opened a second location in King City and will open a third in Wilsonville later this year.
“We’ve been able to expand our footprint,” Martin said. “We have a much larger location. All the studios are fully decked out with vibrant colors and audio equipment in each studio to really prepare the teachers to conduct really awesome lessons.”
Martin says their musicians’ success path program helps motivate the students, which includes things like the 100-day challenge.
They’ve hired teachers for piano, drums, violin, and guitar, and even provide singing lessons.
Martin says they’re filling a need and one that will help these kids in all aspects of life.
“They do better in school when there’s a musical element in their life and I think it also helps kids develop emotionally when they have music,” he said.