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Our mission is to provide free and low cost music lessons to young children with limited means.
Through our programs, children learn to sing, dance, keep a beat, carry a tune, play an instrument, create arrangements, perform for an audience, and collaborate on a creative endeavor.

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Children respond to music from the moment they are born, and we work to activate this response to its fullest potential. Through playful activities, we have children, from infancy to pre k singing dancing and playing instruments. We help classroom teachers and parents learn to develop their musical interactions with kids.

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The ukulele is manageable for small hands, and packs a wallop of versatility. We have brought parents and kids together to learn the instrument in tandem, and we have worked with kids as young as five to discover the expressive value of this instrument.

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Students in Groundwork’s programs have ample chances to share the stage with professional musicians at well attended events. Taking music and musical activity into public spaces elevates our activities and motivates our students to bring their personal best to their musical endeavors.

Groundwork’s teachers have received training through both the James Hill Ukulele Initiative and Music Together. We additionally provide rigorous in-house training, and keep our teachers up to speed with a library of original songs written by teachers themselves.

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OUR STAFF

NEAL KASSANOFF
DIRECTOR/FOUNDER

Creator of Groundwork curriculum

Song writer, composer, singer, teacher

James Hill-certified ukulele instructor 

Daniel Piccuirro
Lead Teacher
  • Graduate in Percussive Studies at Berklee School of Music
  • Extensive performance and recording work
  • Master Level of the James Hill Ukulele Initiative

Dorian Colbert

Teacher
  • Masters degree in developmental psychology
  • 20+ years of music performance
  • 15+ years of providing musical instruction

Nathan Newman

Teacher
  • Self taught multi-instrumentalist
  • Student of music business, performance and technology at Austin Community College
  • Extensive experience in music instruction and performance

Krystina Subieta

Teacher
  • Singer/songwriter with 20 years of recording and public performace experience
  • Released 2 original music albums and a custom-built electronic loop pedal.
  • Studied Music Theory, Composition and Audio Engineering at The University of Florida

Gray Parsons

Teacher
  • Over 20 Years Teaching Music
  • Master of Music Performance Degree
  • Multi-Instrumentalist and Performer
  • Music Together Certified

Gregory Hagen

Teacher

Amy Johnson

Administration
  • BA in Communication from Boise State University
  • Certificate in Nonprofit Leadership and Management

OUR BOARD

Michael Bienvedes Griffin

Board President

Assistant Principal Palm Elementary

Bill Childs

Board Member
  • Attorney by day
  • Hosts and produces KUTX’s nationally syndicated family radio show, Spare the Rock, Spoil the Child
  • He also owns a record label dedicated to family music, benefiting non-profits
  • He loves music for kids and kids making music, and Groundwork’s efforts to get music education to everyone resonates.

Debra Haas

Board Treasurer

Lauren Dreyer

Board Member
  • Clinical Social Worker
  • Aspiring Drummer
  • Believer in access to music as a basic human right

James Cudjo

Board Member
  • Professional educator and trainer with over 20 yrs of working with diverse populations in achieving discernible goals and concrete achievements.
  • Believes that it is the responsibility of the those further down the path to light the way for those behind them.
  • Idols are Malcolm X, Bruce Lee & Nina Simone, to name a few.
  • Avid reader and a die-hard music fan.