Gunner Burkepile, from Lake Hopatcong, having a blast in class!
SPARTA — This fall Sing A Song NJ, LLC., Music Together® of Sparta and Hampton is celebrating its 3 year anniversary thanks in part to an amazing community of local families. With locations in Sparta and Hampton, they are now offering Music Together classes 7 days a week, and also now offer acting classes, group and individual vocal lessons, piano, and guitar lessons, as well as bringing music to preschools in Sparta. Owner Heather Donnelly is elated over how far the business has come in 3 short years. “I’m sure any local business owner is always worried about succeeding,” Donnelly said. "Over the past few years I have seen many Mommy & Me type classes pop up, but the one thing I’ve learned is that the quality of your program is what counts. Our programs are top notch. However most importantly, I learned having a staff who is incredibly talented and passionate about what they do is the key to success.” Since 2014, Sing A Song NJ started with only 54 families in their Music Together classes. Today, that number has tripled. This number does not include the older children who participate in the acting program, group and private vocal, piano, voice and guitar classes. Donnelly credits this success not only with the quality of her staff but also the caliber of families in the area. “Our parents and grandparents of little ones understand the importance music has on their children’s ever growing brains,” Donnelly said. “All children are born with an aptitude for music. It’s the exposure between birth and age 5 that will shape a child’s ability to participate comfortably in music throughout their lives.” Donnelly and her staff attend at least three live 5 hour training sessions in Princeton NJ a year which is a true testament to their dedication toward the understanding of how the program impacts a child’s brain and its relationship to music and movement. “When you walk into any of our classes, you instantly feel better," said Jennifer Papageneres, a Music Together teacher. “We have no expectations for the children. They can get up and move, sit, stare, laugh or whatever they need to do. However, we base our classes on modeling, where parents, grandparents, or nannies are asked to have fun participating and demonstrating , any way they feel comfortable. It becomes a positive community of music makers for the children.” It can be hard to find or connect with other young families in or around Sussex County. Sing A Song NJ has become more than music classes. The families have developed relationships outside of classes. “It’s one of my favorite side effects of classes,” Donnelly said. “It's amazing to watch the other adults and kids become friends and get together outside of class. Every single one of our classes becomes a small music making family. Sometimes babies reach out to other mothers, or grandparents end up snuggling with more than their own caregivers. It’s beautiful to watch. I hope we can continue to make Music Together for years to come.” Fall Music Together classes will begin the week of September 11th, 7 days a week. Open Registration begins August 20th. Voice Lessons, Piano, and guitar lessons run continuously throughout the year for ages 5-adult, and 4-adult for piano. Call 973-400-8719 or visit singasongnj.com for more information or to register for classes.