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School earns by teaching music students how to rock

By: - Senior Reporter / @agarciayapCDN
08:22 AM February 06, 2012

Coming from a family whose business has long been related to music, Pia Salonga C. Quisido grew up loving musical notes and even once had her own band.

Quisido’s love for music took root from her grandfather Adolfo Salonga, who was a trumpet player. Since then, her family has been engaged in the music business.

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“The family have the Salonga School of Music and the owner of JB Music is my aunt,” said Quisido.

So it was always her dream to set up her own business related to the music industry where she could teach music to everyone across all age groups with only the basic requirement of being interested to learn and the passion for music.

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Being someone who used to be the lead singer of a popular Cebuano band, Feminine Mode, she wanted to teach those who would want to set up a band or those who already in a band and wanting to learn more about music.

So in April of 2011, Quisido then set up her own school called Salonga School of Rock in a rented 70-square meter space at the ground floor of Cardoc Building along Mango Avenue in Cebu City.

It’s a small space with three rooms that can accommodate four to five students each session.

“For the business, our investment is somewhere from P500,000 to P600,000 to set up the place, equipment and hire the initial manpower to start operations,” she said.

At present, Quisido sits as the school director and has hired one full-time staff member to assist her in the day-to-day operations.

For her music instructors, Quisido tapped local musicians who are already engaged in their own bands to teach in her school in a consultancy basis.

“I now offer classes on voice and stage performance, acoustic, electric and base guitars, drum lessons, keyboard lessons and violin classes.”

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According to Quisido, she now has at least 70 students attending regular sessions in her school.

She also claimed that her school had a high retention rate regarding her enrolees.

“Maybe because of our unique and interesting way of teaching them. What we do is we actually make them listen first before we introduce the theory side, whom most of our students find very interesting and fun to learn,” she said.

Quisido said she only charge P4,800 for 12 session for all classes, which was very affordable when compared to industry standards.

Her teachers include Carlo Borromeo a known musician in Cebu and other musicians like Rick Alino, George Leon and Mark Alu among others.

“I have eight part-time teachers at present offering different classes to our students.”

Quisido said during class seasons of June to March, they would usually require students to have one session every week and at least three sessions during summer.

They also do partnerships with some schools in Cebu through their After School Music Education program.

They go to the school campuses during after classes or during their Music Club sessions to teach them music.

“Currently we are doing that with PAREF Southcrest Cebu and the USC (University of San Carlos) Montessori for voice and stage performance,” she said.

Currently, she is in the process of getting an international accreditation for the school from the Rock School UK in London, which is a certifying board for Pop and Rock education.

“Should we get that, we will be the first music school here that is accredited by that prestigious organization,” she said.

The accreditation will take about two years to process.

She said that having this would put Cebu in the map for the best producers of music

Quisido said it would take about two years to process and complete the accreditation which she believed would help put Cebu in the map for the best producers of musicians and bands in the country.

She said she was optimistic of the market for music enthusiasts in Cebu despite the availability of do-it-yourself tutorials in the Internet.

“In our school we teach our students how to perform which tutorials in online sites don’t teach,” she said.

Quisido said she believed in the wealth of good talents here in Cebu that she could further develop to become perhaps a most sought after talent not only in the country but also abroad.

“We’d like to take part in making Cebu talents in the aspect of music known not only here but around the world,” said Quisido.

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