A graduate of Metropolitan State University with a music degree, Norm Giblin used to teach piano lessons when he lived in Denver, Colorado.
“But my wife [Kara Giblin] and I moved out here a few years ago and we were looking for business opportunities in Wilmington and found out that there was not a School of Rock here,” Norm Giblin said.
School of Rock, a franchise music school that combines private rock-and-roll music lessons with band practices, has more than 260 locations worldwide. The Giblins’ franchise in Wilmington could be open around the end of December in Suite 130 at 820 Town Center Drive, Mayfaire Town Center.
“We’re really excited to bring this to Wilmington because it really is such a great thing for music education, something that we feel Wilmington needs,” said Norm Giblin, who is general manager in addition to being co-owner of the new School of Rock.
He said School of Rock offers different programs for different ages and skill levels. For example, 3- to 5-year-olds can participate in the Little Wing Program (named after a Jimi Hendrix song), which is held in a group setting and incorporates learning basic rhythm and song structure.
“They learn at an early age to love the music that we all love,” Norm Giblin said.
Another example, Rock 101, is for kids ages 8 to 12 who don’t have musical experience. Meanwhile, the Performance Program is the School of Rock’s flagship program, combining weekly 45-minute private lessons with three-hour band practices.
Adults are also welcome to participate in a program for those over 18 years old.
Norm Giblin said the core instruments for School of Rock are guitar, bass guitar, drums, keyboards and vocals, but others could be added depending on whether there are teachers for them. Giblin said he expects to start with seven to 10 instructors depending on their availability.
The 3,000-square-foot Mayfaire Town Center space for School of Rock is next to another educational venue, The STEM Labs.
“When we were looking at spaces, we were looking all over town, but there were two factors: One, where do families go a lot, and when we talked to families that we know, Mayfaire was No. 1 on their list of where they find themselves going often.
"And then two, when a parent takes their child to a lesson typically, they’re looking for something to do while their child is in that lesson and so Mayfaire’s a great option," he said.
The School of Rock offers free trial lessons. The Wilmington location's Mayfaire space is currently under construction.
Norm Giblin said, “We really wanted to invest in the community and bring something of real value to the community because we fell in love with Wilmington and made this our home.”
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