Local resident, Brooke Sanders, was recently accepted into the 15th Annual GRAMMY Camp program in Los Angeles, California at the University of Southern California, Thornton School of Music. The camp is taking place July 23-27.
"I think [the program] will be an exciting experience," Sanders said. "I enjoy playing with other people, I enjoy being in a band, it is not something I get to do very often with people who are more of a professional level."
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Sanders begins her senior year at Davison Academy in Nashville, Tennessee this fall, where she is a member of the Praise Band. She has directed music for the theater department productions. She is also a member of the Calvary Baptist Church Band in Franklin.
She said this was the second time she has applied to the camp. The first time was last year when she applied to the songwriting track only. This year she applied for the songwriting track and the piano track.
Sanders said she was surprised she got accepted this year because the program is very competitive.
According to a press release, the program is the signature music industry camp for U.S. high school students. This year 90 high school students from 74 U.S. cities in 23 states were selected to participate in the camp.
David Sears, executive education director for the GRAMMY Camp, said there were over 400 applicants for about 75 spaces in the camp. He said the camp is so competitive because as far as he knows, they are the only camp in the music industry.
"Our goal is to help students realize and learn the strategies they need to develop to make a living with their artistic technical skills," Sears said.
Guest artists The Head And The Heart are scheduled to offer guidance on a career path in music on July 24 and JoJo is available to advise students focused on songwriting and vocal performance on July 26.
Sanders auditioned with four songs, two original songs she wrote, "Mia and Sebastian's Theme" from LaLa Land and she performed, "I Can Only Imagine" with the Davidson Academy Praise Band.
"There was a lot of different tracks you could audition for and I auditioned for two different tracks," Sanders said.
She was accepted into the piano performance track after the judges looked at her audition pieces.
"What they said in watching my summary videos those even just highlighted my piano playing more than anything, so that is what they though really stood out was my piano playing," she said. "They pick the one they think you would be best suited for."
Sanders said she is looking forward to playing in a band with people from all over the country, who she has never met before.
"Anytime you play with different people there is always something to learn, so I feel like that is what I'm hoping to get the most out of it," she said.
She hopes to improve on playing the piano by ear and expanding her classical repertoire at the camp.
A reception will be held at the Gallery on the Square at 5 p.m. on Aug. 1 when Sanders returns from GRAMMY Camp where she will perform some original songs and songs she learned at the camp. Refreshments will be available.