The Christmas holidays make the Squamish Music Academy’s job a little sweeter, says Kayla Matzen.
“It is the one time of year people want to sing,” the academy’s administrator said. “It’s unfortunate people don’t want to sing year round. But Christmas is kind of a phenomenon.”
On Sunday (Dec. 15), the school is hosting its third annual Seasonal Concert. Chock full of holiday classics and some more obscure pieces, students from six years old to adulthood will perform a variety of numbers.
“We have guitarists that are performing. There’s singers, pianists and fiddlers,” Matzen said.
There’s limited amount of space at the school at 38121 Second Ave., so expect it to be crowded, she warned. The show starts at 7 p.m. and admission is by donation.
On Monday (Dec. 16) from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m., the academy has its Carol Sing. Anyone is welcome, Matzen said. The singalong costs $15 per person and $20 per family.
Matzen loves hunting out new Christmas music. It’s amazing what’s out there, she said, noting she recently came across a more angry song about a girl whose boyfriend broke up with her on Christmas. At a recent Coffee Concert series, Matzen played a piece by German-British Baroque composer George Frideric Handel.
“Me personally, I make it my mission to find Christmas music I don’t know,” she said.
Closing in on its third birthday, the centre has seen a steady growth in the community’s musical interest. The academy boosts 230 private student lessons and, for the first time in its history, the school’s January afterschool programs are already full.
“It is always in our mind to expand,” Matzen said.
Squamish needed the academy, said Jane Wong said, whose two children attend music lessons there. Before the facility’s doors opened, Wong was considering driving to the Lower Mainland to enroll her kids in classes.
“This is great,” she said.