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Arvada non-profit offers music education for kids

The founder hopes their work can supplement music programs for kids, particularly in schools where their programs are cut due to funding or other issues.

DENVER, Colorado — A new non-profit based in Arvada hopes to bring music to kids when schools are often cutting after school music and arts programs. 

Founder and Executive Director Dustin Old has always had a passion for music. His passion turned into a dream. Years ago, he opened up a number of auto repair shops hoping one day the profit from the shops would help start a non-profit focused on giving equal access to all kids to music. 

In the past year, Old was able to secure a space in Arvada that was previously office space. He has turned the space into an area for a non-profit called Colorado After School Music Program, also known as Colorado AMP

Colorado AMP is working to put together an after school music program for any students ages 10 through 15 who love music and want to learn how to play. Even if they have never played before, all are welcome to participate. 

Students will learn theory, ear-training, composition and other skills. For families who cannot afford the cost of the program, scholarships or sliding scale fees are available. 

"Obviously music programs are getting cut from schools right now, and so there could have been no better time for us to start this. This is a time when they are scaling back in schools. It’s a great time for us to scale up," said Old. 

Besides instilling a love for music, Old hopes to provide educational guidance to make sure students are also getting help with homework and their education in the classroom. 

"We would hate for the music side of things to supplant the education that they need to have at school. We want their grades to be good, so we can help them in that aspect too," said Old. 

This past spring and summer, Old has been working with a small group of students as he gets the program underway. To help with donations and other costs, those music students are performing at the Bluebird Theatre August 10th

All profits from the show will go back to Colorado AMP as they grow their program. 

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