“I like to play the piano because it is fun and I can play for others, my parents, friends, teachers, and talent shows.
Third Grade Piano Student
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“As an educator, during a time when the Arts are being eliminated due to financial constraints, I am grateful to have this wonderful program to offer to my students. I hope that the KEYS Program will continue to flourish and provide opportunities that will positively impact the lives of all of the students involved.”
Laurie Giff, Site Director, Lighthouse Program, Beardsley School

Rob Silvan, Founder and Executive Director of KEYS

“I founded KEYS in 2004 because I believe that all children benefit from music, particularly in the form of personalized one-to-one instruction. My conviction is rooted in my own experiences as a student of music, as a musician, and from having been a piano teacher for over 30 years.

All music teachers hope that the next Mozart will one day walk into their studio. This does not happen very often and yet we find many powerful reasons to teach children. For years I have watched children learn to love music not only as listeners but as active creators. I have seen children become more alert and curious appreciators of music and better audience members.

I’ve also witnessed growth in dexterity, hearing, reading, hand/eye and hand/ear coordination among my music students. Many of them experience wonderful development in musical taste and artistry. Music instruction helps kids with goal planning and achievement, developing the courage to face difficulties and perseverance. Self esteem and maturity grow as a result of all these skills. I have seen this on a daily basis, first hand.

Not all families can afford music instruction for their children. And in many school systems the music and arts programs have virtually vanished because of budget constraints.

It is my goal to bring music lessons to children in Bridgeport, CT, just 30 minutes from where I live where children have no means of gaining this vital life experience.  I founded KEYS to give it to them in spite of their backgrounds or financial ability. Since spring of 2004, the program has expanded slowly and deliberately to include over 500 children in private and group music lessons, but this is just the beginning.”

Rob Silvan is a jazz musician and composer, Music Director at the Talmadge Hill Community Church, Coordinator of the Music School at the New Canaan YMCA, and has been a music educator for over thirty years.