McSweeny's School of the Performing Arts is a music school that is located at 1633 North 29th Street, Fort Dodge. The school has been in business for 23 years. McSweeny’s School of the Performing Arts has five professional music instructors offering private music lessons in voice, piano, instrumental music, and Suzuki violin. Those instructors include, MaryAnn McSweeny-Buhr, B.S. & M.A., Voice Instructor and Children’s Chorus Music Director; Mavis Chen, B.M. & M.M, Piano Instructor; Dan Cassady, B.M., M.A., Instrumental Instructor specializing in Brass; Melissa Gillette, B.M. & M.M., Suzuki Violin Instructor; David Klee, B.A., M.M., D.M.A., Instrumental Instructor specializing in Woodwind. Students can also participate in the Fort Dodge Area Children's Chorus (grade 1-7). Voice students are frequent semifinalists and finalists in the National Association of Teachers of Singing (NATS) competitions, are frequently cast as musical leads in area school and community musical theatre productions and continue to be consistent recipients of college vocal music scholarships. During the last 12 years over $565,000 in scholarship money has been awarded to vocalists wishing to pursue vocal music at the college level. Younger vocalists and instrumentalists are encouraged to pursue musical excellence through participation in the Youth Honors Recital and perform in area Bill Riley State Fair Talent Search Shows during the summer. All students demonstrate their progress and quest for musical excellence through participation in bi-annual recitals held in December and May. McSweeny’s School of the Performing Arts has a private recording studio, sound booth, and a large stage and concert hall. McSweeny’s School of the Performing Arts is the host of the Youth Honors Recital co-sponsored by the Fort Dodge Area Symphony and McSweeny’s School of the Performing Arts for outstanding young soloists in the spring. The recital is open to vocalists and instrumentalists 8th grade and younger. McSweeny’s School of the Performing Arts is also host of the annual Desiring the Arts Festival. Desiring the Arts Festival connects and provides concerts and educational workshops for youth and adults in Fort Dodge and the surrounding area with working professionals from all over the world specializing in the arts.
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