Music box: One Year of the School of Honk

The School of Honk was born during the fall of 2014 in Somerville, Massachusetts as a space to play and learn Brass Band New Orleans and other world music through a mentorship based approach.

The School, the brainchild of  Kevin Leppmann, encompasses the spirit of a community like no other: free to all, the School is donation based and people are asked to contribute whatever they can. For many, it’s either the first time they play an instrument, or a return to one. It’s a process filled with frustration and joy. Participants grow as musicians and friendships are built, all while strengthen the community. 

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The first School of Honk rehearsing space was a garage area no larger than 30 x 30 feet (hence the title of this project) which served as the headquarters of a science-based after school program.

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The first School of Honk rehearsing space was a garage area no larger than 30 x 30 feet (hence the title of this project) which served as the headquarters of a science-based after school program.

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Rehearsals are lead by mentors, focusing on learning songs or perfecting specific sections of a song.

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Rehearsals are lead by mentors, focusing on learning songs or perfecting specific sections of a song.

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Trumpet player. Detail

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Trumpet player. Detail

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The School of Honk is a community space which parents and their kids share.  In some cases parents visited  School to bring their kids but ended up joining the band.

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The School of Honk is a community space which parents and their kids share.  In some cases parents visited  School to bring their kids but ended up joining the band.

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A visitor to the School disapproves of the noise level

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A visitor to the School disapproves of the noise level

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Davis Square is the most frequented area during parades. This area is where the Honk Fest every October. 

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Davis Square is the most frequented area during parades. This area is where the Honk Fest every October. 

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A new rehearsal location was needed, and the School moved to a church in the Davis Sq area. Here, the

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A new rehearsal location was needed, and the School moved to a church in the Davis Sq area. Here, the

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During the summer a School of Honk Summer Camp was held at the John F. Kennedy Elementary School. Eventually, some of the students joined the Sunday rehearsals.

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During the summer a School of Honk Summer Camp was held at the John F. Kennedy Elementary School. Eventually, some of the students joined the Sunday rehearsals.

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One year after its foundation, the School of Honk have become part of the cultural fabric of Somerville performing in various events throughout the city. 

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One year after its foundation, the School of Honk have become part of the cultural fabric of Somerville performing in various events throughout the city. 

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