Today the Center for Musical Arts serves more than 600 students weekly with expanded levels of programming. Still deeply rooted in the founding philosophy of equity and inclusion, today’s Center for Musical Arts embraces a holistic view of music-making, from amateur to professional, and listening enjoyment in alignment with the organizational mission of inspiring and connecting community members of all ages by providing access to the best of the world’s music through education and performance.
Read more about our history in the timeline below.
The Rocky Mountain Center for Musical Arts (RMCMA), co-founded by professional musicians, educators, and community leaders Peggy Bruns and Kathy Kucsan, opens on September 9 with 13 registered students at 111 West Cannon St. in Lafayette.
By the end of its first year, RMCMA includes 14 faculty, over 100 students, a community chorus, a youth orchestra, and a growing early childhood music program.
RMCMA stages a community production of Amahl & the Night Visitors, which becomes an annual tradition until 2009.
RMCMA outgrows its original space and initiates the purchase of 200 East Baseline, the former First United Methodist Church. At the closing, funds are wired from an anonymous donor for the full purchase price of the property, surprising RMCMA staff and board.
The Nonprofit Facilities Fund supports a renovation of the former church building, transforming the space into two performance spaces and 12 studios. 200 volunteers help with the project.
By the end of spring semester, RMCMA has over 500 students, a community band, an annual community yard sale, an annual Swing Dance, two concert series: CU at the RMCMA and the World Series Concerts.
The Heartstrings program is created with a donation of 75 instruments from a faculty member. Heartstrings provides need-based tuition assistance as well as low- or no-cost instrument rentals.
After 9/11, the community gathers at RMCMA to grieve and process in a song circle dedicated to the memory of those lost.
The first RMCMA Honors Recital is held.
Peggy and Kathy are given the Outstanding Alumni Service Award by Dean Dan Sher and the CU College of Music for creating the RMCMA and maintaining strong ties to CU.
Leadership from the Colorado Music Festival reaches out to RMCMA to create a program called “Classically KIDS!”, a collaboration that contributes to the two organizations merging in 2010
RMCMA raises the funds for its Steinway concert grand piano. A dedication concert is held and the piano is dedicated to the memory of Terrie Stewart, a staff accompanist at CU-Boulder and a longtime friend and supporter of the RMCMA.
The Colorado Music Festival & Center for Musical Arts is formed when the two organizations merge.
The Heartstrings Program turns 20 years old, having served more than 5,000 students with need-based tuition assistance and access to affordable instrument rentals.
The Center for Musical Arts celebrates an incredible 25 years. The Center serves more than 600 students weekly and is still deeply rooted in the founding philosophy of excellence, access, community, and heart, with a mission of inspiring and connecting community members of all ages through music.
To the Next 25 Years: Make a Gift
If you’re as passionate about music, community, and access as we are, we hope you will support the Center for Musical Arts with a gift today!