September 16, 2016

One dictionary defines an academy as a place for “distinguished scholars and artists.”

But don’t let that scare you away from joining the new music program at the Downtown Campus: “St. Luke’s Academy of Music.”

If you have ever wanted to sing or play an instrument, here’s your chance. Don’t worry… there’s no American Idol table of judges involved.

“We’re less concerned with the end result of the performance,” Candace Fish said with a smile. “It’s not about performing well, although that will happen (over time). The emphasis is really on the student and the person – and making it a meaningful experience for them.”

Candace is the Edmond Campus Director of Traditional Worship. Even before joining the St. Luke’s staff, she wanted to start a program for people to experience the joy of making music – vocal and instrumental – regardless of ability.

Whether you’re a beginner or an expert, it doesn’t matter at St. Luke’s Academy. Pick an instrument, any instrument. Saxophone? You can learn it! The piccolo? Yep, you don’t even have to know how to spell it. Candace has an extensive rolodex of teachers in the metro who can teach everything from violin to the triangle.

‘But I’m too old to start something new,’ you might say. Candace shakes her head. It’s never too late to learn music – and St. Luke’s Academy is about more than just music.

“The most meaningful teaching experiences I’ve had are with adult students,” she says. “It actually opens you up to new experiences, and for us as Christians, opens us up to listen to God’s call – and go places we haven’t been before.

“Our focus is not to make ‘performers’ necessarily. We’re focused on shaping the whole person.” For children and youth, she says, “It’s really about learning life skills and creating relationships with other people – learning how to be social. Giving them confidence. Feeling like they can take on the world.”

Candace, whose grandmother has been a piano teacher and church organist for years, is finishing a doctorate at OU in Piano Performance and Pedagogy (teaching).

She urges anyone who is interested to contact her before buying or renting an instrument. She has connections with local music stores and teachers who can provide guidance on what to buy, and what not to buy.

Right now, St. Luke’s Academy of Music is offering one-on-one lessons with a teacher for a cost that varies. As more people sign up, classes will eventually be offered as well. There are plans to expand St. Luke’s Academy to the new Edmond Campus, and to offer everyone other genres of learning – such as yoga and cooking. To learn more, email Candace Fish at cfish@stlukesokc.org or fill out the form below.


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