The WHIN Story

Founded in 2012 by David Gracia, Andrea Profili, Kathryn Tomlin, Jose Iglesias Carnot and Xiomara Niño; WHIN currently serves 200 students. The program fills the educational gaps in the communities of Washington Heights and Inwood and forms a music education pipeline from birth through adulthood for all students. Students are accepted regardless of their ability to pay for lessons. WHIN is comprised of three programs which provide group and private classes to beginners and advanced students.

  1. Early Childhood Program

  2. Musical Foundations Program

  3. Instrumental Program

Musical Foundations Program

music Play | Ages 2-4

Music Play is the entry point to the program for students ages 2-4. Students and their parents/guardians experience multicultural music in a child centered environment; allowing students to make choices individually and as a group, to explore space, to share their individual ways of moving and making music, to tell stories, to express themselves, and to develop executive functioning skills. 

Musicianship | Ages 5+

Musicianship serves an important role in building aural and ensemble skills. Students transition from informal learning to formal instruction. Pieces are selected according to abilities of the group and sequentially builds listening, performing, audiating, improvising, reading, and writing vocabularies.

Instrumental Program

Private Lessons | Ages 3+

The instrument is a tool for self-expression and developing problem solving skills. Private lessons teach children to understand and make music through a natural sequence and we teach adults how to follow the child in order to allow the child to develop his/her potential. Central to the lessons are the child's five basic needs for order, coordination, concentration, independence, and sense of belonging as outlined by Maria Montessori. 

Teachers model effective communication, organize learning into sequential steps, and guide parents to continue to build their own confidence as teachers and learners so they can serve as the home teacher. Instructors observe and make recommendations about the relationship between the parent and child in order to support the child's self-construction, independence, and lifelong love for learning. 

Ensembles | Ages 5+

Students who take private lessons at WHIN also participate in an ensemble class according to their ability. The group setting provides opportunities for students to engage in peer teaching and to learn to conduct the ensemble. We offer three levels of ensembles.

Pre-Orchestra | Beginners | 4:00-4:45

WHIN Youth Orchestra | Intermediate | 4:50-5:35

Camerata | Advanced | 5:45-7:15

Students participating in Instrumental Program are required to participate in the Musical Foundations Program.

Community Days

On the first Wednesday of every month WHIN Music Project holds community days so that students, families, and community members can gather together to share the joy of music. Community Days include presentations by local musicians, businesses, and service providers in order to enrich the lives of our program participants.

To apply read our FAQ page.