Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Spotlight on Sara Bollinger

Live on TV
When Sara Bollinger showed up at around 6 a.m. at the Patel Conservatory, she’d never performed a solo in front of an audience before. Yet she was about to perform live on television for the entire Tampa Bay area on the Good Day Tampa Bay morning show.

“It was really nerve-wracking up until I started performing,” said Sara. “Then the nerves went away, and it was amazing,” 

The show, which featured our summer camp programs, aired in June. Since then, Sara’s artistic journey at the Conservatory has continued to blossom and reach new heights.

Where she started
Sara joined the Patel Conservatory’s senior choir in January, 2012. The 17-year-old senior from Apollo Beach was pretty laid back and quiet at first.

Prior to joining the Conservatory, she had participated in a musical theater group for home-school students. She also had taken three years of private piano lessons and five years of guitar lessons. But she was hesitant to try something new.

“I joined [the senior choir] in the middle of year, so people already knew each other,” said Sara. “But everyone really accepted me.”

She enjoyed choir and returned for the summer Vocal Arts Academy, where her talents really got her noticed.

“Sara found her comfort here at the Conservatory during the summer,” said instructor Deborah Lynch. “She soon became a leader as a vocalist and a friend to the other students.”

Since then, she has participated in a variety of classes including musical theater, private voice lessons and Rock Star Retreat, where Lynch discovered Sara's solo and keyboard skills and asked her to perform on Good Day Tampa Bay.

Her first public solo performance was her rendition of Eminem and Rihanna’s Love the Way You Lie.

“I enjoy making songs my own. I loved that’s actually part of a giant mash-up of several songs that I put together,” she explained.

Sara also put on a solo acoustic performance for more than 100 people at the Conservatory’s open house in August.

Where she's going
While she always envisioned becoming a solo artist, Sara recently developed a passion for technical theater during the Conservatory’s summer production of Little Shop of Horrors.

There was a call for volunteers to help put the set together and Sara, who was part of the cast, showed up.

“I just had a blast,” she said.

Now, in addition to taking several classes towards a Theater Certification at the Conservatory, she is doing a technical theater internship with Hatrick Theater. She hopes to pursue technical theater in college.

Her time here has helped her develop her vocal technique, deepen her music theory and music reading skills and learn new skills. But, more than that, she has enjoyed the sense of community here.

“It’s a safe place,” said Sara. “It’s the most professional place I’ve ever studied. I’m so glad I found it.”

Check out Sara in our fall Vocal and Instrumental Music Fall Concert on Oct. 22, 2013. Tickets start at just $10.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Orientation and Private Lesson information meeting

We've had a great start to our new school year at the Patel Conservatory!

If you missed our open house, don’t worry, we have another chance for you to come learn more about us and register for classes.

The Patel Conservatory will have an Orientation next Thursday, Sept. 19 at 6:30 p.m.

It’s your opportunity to learn more about all of our programs, policies and procedures.

Whether you are new to the Conservatory, or it’s been a while, we strongly encourage all registered students, and those interested in joining, to attend. Tours will also be available before and after the orientation.

To RSVP, please click here, or call our registration office at 813-222-1002.

Private Lesson Meeting
Following the Orientation, we will have a meeting about Private Music Lessons at 7:15 p.m.

The meeting is for all parents or adult students registered for private lessons, as well as those interested in finding out more about private lessons. The Conservatory offers private lessons in piano, voice, violin, guitar, drums and many more musical instruments.

We’ll discuss attendance, how and why to sign in, payment schedules, how to handle make-up lessons and more.

To RSVP, please click here, or call our registration office at 813-222-1002.

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Quest for the Stars, a musical for kids!

This weekend, kids can learn about astronomy in the musical production of Quest for the Stars!

Produced by our Patel Conservatory Theater department, it’s a show created especially for kids with the idea that theater can be both entertaining and educational.

Directed by Jack Holloway, artistic director of Tampa’s Hat Trick Theater, the show is a time-travel adventure that explores science and history.

“It’s informative but fast-paced and fun,” said Holloway. “If you’re not careful, you just might learn something.”

Holloway performed in children’s shows for six years with the Eckerd Theater Company.  He also currently teaches Creative Drama at the Patel Conservatory, as well as Conservatory outreach classes for St. Peter Clavier.

“What I love about children’s theater is that you’ll never find a more honest audience. If they’re bored, or if you talk down to them, they’ll let you know,” he said.

“When you work with adults, you have to get them to open up. But with kids, you can see them using their imaginations. They’ll go with you anywhere.”

Quest for the Stars was created by students in the Patel Conservatory’s Theater for Young Audiences program last year, along with nationally recognized playwright Doug Cooney.

The show begins in the year 2061 as elementary school student Eve feels defeated by a book report assignment. She travels back and forth through time to receive help and inspiration from historical figures such as Ptolemy and Cleopatra. Eve learns the importance of asking questions and having a sense of curiosity.

Some Patel Conservatory theater students will attend the show as part of their course curriculum. Parents and siblings who purchase tickets are welcome to sit with their students.

Tickets are just $7 through Sat., Sept. 7, and $10 at the door. For tickets, call 813-229-7827, click here, or visit our box office in person.

Prepare for All-State with free vocal and strings clinics

Would you like professional instruction and advice on your performance for this year’s All-State vocal or string competition?

The Patel Conservatory and the University of Tampa will host two free workshops to help students prepare for the All-State competition. If students are selected at the All-State competition they will be given the opportunity to perform at the Florida Music Educators Conference and work with esteemed music professionals.

The string clinic will be Sat., Sept. 14 for students who play the violin, viola, cello or bass. Students will receive help from professional teaching artists from the Patel Conservatory, the University of Tampa and The Florida Orchestra.

The vocal clinic will be on Sat., Sept. 21, 2013. Students will work with professionals who teach private voice lessons, choir, music theory and musical theater courses at the accredited Patel Conservatory. Pick up tips on sight-singing, vocal technique, auditioning and the musicianship exam, and even rehearse one of the All-State pieces before the September 23 exams.

Students will be further prepared to face the All-State judges after attending this workshop. Free tours of the Straz Center and the University of Tampa will also be available for those interested in learning more about their music programs. 

Sat., Sept. 14, 2013
Middle school students: 8 to 10 a.m.
Grades 9 and10: 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
Grade 11 and 12: 2:30 to 4:30 p.m. 

Sat., Sept. 21, 2013
Middle school students: 10 a.m. to noon
High school students: 12:30- 2:30 p.m.

Both clinics are free, but RSVP is required. Please RSVP by calling the Patel Conservatory registrar at 813.222.1002.

Sunday, September 1, 2013

Tap into your creative side with acting classes for adults

Make this the year you do something for yourself! Tap into your creative side with acting classes for adults at the Patel Conservatory in Tampa.

Due to popular demand, the Conservatory has added a new Beginning Adult Acting class to our schedule on Sundays from 1 to 3 p.m.

Delve into a fun and enriching experience that will help you gain confidence and experience.

Students will learn introductory classic theater exercises to develop their acting skills that include listening, concentration, spontaneity and working as an ensemble. They’ll also hone their understanding and use of technique and develop skills in script analysis, dialogue and character development.

The Conservatory also offers adult classes in On-Camera Acting, Scene Study, Voice, Dance and Guitar.

For more information or to register, please call 813-222-1002.

Check out more about our Adult Acting program in this special TV segment that aired on WEDU.