History of Upper Valley Music Center
The Upper Valley Music Center is a community music school based in Lebanon, NH, serving over 1,000 students a year from across the Upper Valley region of Vermont and New Hampshire. UVMC’s expert faculty work with beginning through advanced students and teach programs designed for ages birth through adulthood. UVMC is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization and relies on the generosity of individuals, foundations, and businesses to support music education activities.
The Upper Valley Music Center was founded in 1995 by three community members as a way for Upper Valley residents to gather to make music together. All three were active members of the presenter group supporting the Carnegie Chamber players. The success of the Carnegies’ modest outreach program persuaded the founders of the need for a regional organization to foster musical activities for players and singers of all ages and levels of experience.
UVMC was established with a three-fold mission: to create instrumental and vocal ensembles where none existed; to serve as a clearinghouse for information about the area’s musical organizations and activities; and to provide a place for people to come together to develop their musical knowledge, proficiency, and enjoyment.
In 2002 UVMC started a Suzuki violin program, a philosophy and method of instruction that teaches music in the same way that children learn their primary language. After several years of successful growth, UVMC officially became a community music school in 2008, offering lessons, group classes, ensembles, and workshops.
In 2017 UVMC’s Board of Directors launched Securing Our Future: The Campaign for a Home for Music Education in order to create a permanent home for the organization. With a flood of community support, UVMC purchased and renovated the Kendrick-Wood House, an historic building in downtown Lebanon. The doors opened with a grand opening celebration on September 9, 2017.
In May 2018, UVMC hosted Sing & Play 50k. This musical marathon featured 50,000 seconds of music in support of music education. The event raised $100,000 from over 1,000 donors, but most importantly it created a day to celebrate music making by and for each other.