Beginning February, Girls Rock! Charleston will launch its first spring semester after-school program at Burke High School. They’re taking applications until Jan. 19.
Local volunteer music teachers and band coaches will work with 20 girls or transgender youths between the ages of 13 and 17. They’ll learn how to sing; play guitar, bass, drums, or keyboards; form a band; and write original music. At the end of the program, they’ll be expected to perform at a local venue. “It’s a pay-what-you-can sliding scale,” says Girls Rocker Chantelle Lebeau about the program. “We definitely will not turn anyone away for lack of funds.”
Beyond teaching teenagers the School of Rock basics, the after-school program will focus on mentorship, leadership, and how music can be a platform for social change, Lebeau says. Students will also engage in social justice-orientated workshops, including classes on the movement’s history in Charleston and self-defense.