The TAPA Music Program offers a wide array of musical experiences and opportunities with a focus on individual skill building, group collaboration and community performances.
In Lower School (7th - 8th grade), students receive an introduction to music performance using keyboards, drums, xylophones, voices and guitars. We study various musical genres, create original drum beats and lyrics and consider the role music plays in our community and our world.
In Upper School (9th - 12th grade) Music Majors receive two periods of music instruction every day. Arts Block focus on theory, history, composition, improvisation, songwriting, ear training and general musicianship. Arts Practicum provides an opportunity for students to take private instrument lessons and develop their instrumental or vocal skills.
Students may also enroll in the following after school ensembles: Chorus, Percussion Ensemble, Brass Band, MARS Camp (Songwriting + Recording)
The TAPA Music Department is made up of world-class performing artists.
Current and past guest artists include:
Sara Azriel: Voice, Piano, Chorus, MARS Camp
Dan Dodd: General music, MARS Camp
Marc Friedman (The Slip, Ryan Montbleau): Bass
Michael Gore (Extraordinary Rendition Band): Trumpet
Keyla Hamilton (Extraordinary Rendition Band): Saxophone
Jesse Holstein, Viola
Tyler James Kelly (The Silks, Cowboy and Lady): Guitar
Sidy Maiga: African Drumming
Mike Murdock (Morris and the East Coast): Drums & Percussion Ensemble
Chase Spruill, Violin
Jonathan Tollefson (Extraordinary Rendition Band): Saxophone
TAPA Music Programs are possible due to the support of community and national partners:
TAPA Music Arts Team
Avi David, Music Teacher and Artist in Residence (habla español)
Avi David is a Providence-based performing artist, educator and organizer. He received a B.A. from Colby College in music performance, history, theory and composition with a focus on jazz guitar and improvisation. He has studied music and performed in Cuba, Spain, Italy, Austria, Czech Republic, India, Nepal and across the USA. He performs regularly with the award-winning Extraordinary Rendition Band, an activist street band. He has taught music for the past 9 years in urban and special ed. classrooms (K-12). Additionally, he is a member of the PRONK! Committee, What Cheer Art Co. and is a co-founder of the Extraordinary Youth Ensemble, an after school music program for Providence youth. An avid performer, educator, cook, traveler, nature-lover and life-enthusiast, David believes deeply in the transformative and therapeutic power of the arts to bring people together, enrich lives, strengthen communities and change the world!
If you want to learn more about Mr. David, check out the mini-documentary that TAPA Film Major Liana R (Class of 2016) made about him here.
Porsha Funches, Adjunct Music Artist in Residence and Alumni Coordinator
Porsha holds a B.A. in Psychology and a M.S. in Human Resource Management from Johnson & Wales University. She is the daughter of Tony Funches, who is the former lead singer of “Herb Reed & The Platters.” She has been traveling and performing for over 20 years in places such as Las Vegas, New York, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, and many more. Porsha has a burning passion for teaching and working with the youth who are passionate about the world of music.
“I believe that children are the future. Teach them well and let them lead the way; Show them all the beauties they possess inside” – Whitney Houston
She also is our Alumni Coordinator here at TAPA providing the space and time for all of our alumni to reconnect and offering any helpful services they may require.