The Suzuki School of Newton is a nonprofit music school and preschool that is an active contributor to the Newton arts community. We are happy to announce the School is making a significant move.
After 32 years in seven different rental facilities throughout Newton, the School purchased the historic Staples-Craft-Wiswall Farmstead at 1615 Beacon Street in Waban’s village center in November 2017. Construction began in August 2018, and the school plans to open its newly-renovated doors in early 2019.
A permanent home for the Suzuki School has major implications—the stability of owning a property will allow the school the time and resources to expand its community outreach and financial assistance initiatives in order to provide essential programs and services to all Newton families regardless of household income.
Current community outreach activities include performances at local village fairs and assisted living facilities, free public concerts, free classes at local libraries, and participation in Newton-based programs such as Arts Stroll and Shop, Shop Local, and Celebrate Newton.
A scholarship program ensures that affordable preschool and music education are available to children from all socio-economic backgrounds. These scholarships currently support 24 music school families and two preschool families.
With a capital campaign goal of $3.15 million, the Suzuki School of Newton has raised nearly $2.9 million, including a $100,000 Cultural Facilities Fund grant awarded by the Massachusetts Cultural Council and MassDevelopment for capital projects that expand access to education and the arts.
Extending equal opportunities to all children echoes one of the core tenets of the Suzuki philosophy of education: that every child can learn in a nurturing environment with expert teachers. Suzuki School of Newton’s music school and preschool are grounded in the teaching philosophy of 20th-century pedagogue Dr. Shinichi Suzuki, who believed that children could learn to play musical instruments the same way they learn the language: through imitation and repetition with the support of teachers and parents working collaboratively.
Dr. Suzuki also believed that children should have an enriching educational environment at the earliest possible age. Suzuki School of Newton students builds confidence, a sense of personal value, and a capacity for complex skill learning through musical instrument study.
Sachiko Isihara has served as the Executive Director of Suzuki School of Newton for the past 20 years. For Isihara and the school, putting down permanent roots in Newton is a momentous achievement that has been years in the making.
“We are thrilled to have a permanent home in Newton,” says Ms. Isihara. “It is our vision to be a valued community resource and arts leader, bringing music into the lives of students, families, and our neighbors.”