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New children’s music program launching in the spring

Hugo Brito
Teaching artists meet at Creative Kids for a Border Beats workshop.

Border Beats, a new children’s music program that teaches young individuals how to play music using the MIMA Method, will launch this spring at Providence Memorial Hospital.

The MIMA Method focuses on the process of improvisation to unlock the creative potential of groups by working in successive hour-long workshops, weeklong trainings or year-long residencies.

Children unlock their creative potential by using interactive musical games and original songs. The MIMA Method of music teaching will help boost creative confidence and encourage empathy to young patients and children throughout the local community.

Created as a collaboration between Neon Desert Music Festival, Creative Kids and MIMA Music, Border Beats will serve as the music arm of Creative Kids, which is a nationally recognized non-profit community-based art agency that reaches more than 600 youth in the El Paso area year round.

Creative Kids first began working with the New York-based MIMA Music with the help of a donation provided by the Neon Desert Music Festival.

Gina Martinez, executive producer of Neon Desert Music Festival, said in a press release that they are honored to be partnering with outstanding organizations and are confident the program will benefit the border region for years to come.

“Creating a children’s music program has always been a goal of ours from the start and we are excited that this dream is finally coming true,” Martinez said.

Through Border Beats, children apply new skills and knowledge into a collaborative project that leads to an original musical composition

Kory Fernandez, senior computer science major, said the program is a much-needed resource in our local community and that it’s a great self-esteem booster.

“It sounds like a good program because I heard music exposure exercises the brain very well,” Fernandez said. “It expands the mind and enhances coordination and motor skills.”

   Upon completing a project, students solidify their accomplishments through a group recording or performance.  Teaching artists facilitate group discussions and peer reviews so students can reflect on their experience and integrate emotional and musical discoveries into their life.

Zach Paul, a partner and founder of Splendid Sun Productions, said they hope the program will extend its reach to local schools by the fall.

“Working with Providence Memorial Hospital is the start to where we want to take the program,” Paul said. “In the future we hope to expand into other hospitals and local schools as well as extracurricular organizations throughout the community.”

Learning new material and discovering innate abilities helps children to transcend their perceived limitations and allows them to become proficient singers, songwriters and musicians. It enhances creative confidence and encourages empathy

Anaysa Arce, sophomore nursing major, said the program would benefit in helping education about music since many schools don’t have music programs in their curriculum.

“I feel we need more programs targeted at not only entertaining young individuals, but educating them as well,” Arce said. “It sounds like a great program, especially if it will expose children to opportunities they otherwise might not have had access to.”

Creative Kids is seeking teaching artists who are comfortable playing a musical instrument and speaking to other people about music. The hospital program will entail a commitment of one to two sessions per week through September.

People who may be interested in becoming a teaching artist must be proficient in a musical instrument and be passionate about teaching

MIMA is holding a weeklong training session for teaching artists from March 23 to 27.

Valerie Herrera may be reached at [email protected].

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New children’s music program launching in the spring