Turtle Bay Music School is proud to partner with local organizations to provide a wide variety of free music programs to senior New Yorkers. To learn more about partnering with Turtle Bay Music School, please contact Community Programs Manager Sarah Grosman at or at 212-753- 8811 x220.


Our partnerships have included:


Brazilian Percussion and Dance Residency

The Senior Center of VISIONS at Selis Manor is New York City’s first senior center designed exclusively for blind or visually impaired seniors. TBMS is proud to work with VISIONS to provide much-needed music programming. Renowned dancer and choreographer Quenia Ribeiro and percussionist Nick Birmelin lead participants in an exploration of the rhythms and motion unique to the various regions of Brazil, including various forms of Samba, Orixa dance and Maculele (stick fighting dance from sugar cane plantations of Bahia).

<span>Director, VISIONS Community Center</span>
"Working with Turtle Bay Music School has been such a positive experience […] The artists are able to make such strong connections with the audience and really transcend the clients for a moment to a place of peace and tranquility. Every participant feels recognized and truly a part from beginning to end. Artists from Turtle Bay Music School were able to bridge those gaps in age differences and really show how fun music is no matter what age you are. Turtle Bay Music School artists have been a wonderful addition to what we are able to offer at VISIONS […] Many of our participants are on fixed incomes and do not travel often to unfamiliar places. Being able to provide music in our space has given them such great joy and comfort. We look forward to continuing our partnership with Turtle Bay Music School; the participants wouldn’t have it any other way!!!"
Ann DeShazo Director, VISIONS Community Center

The SAGE Center

Improvisation & Composition Workshops

Teaching artists Patti Onorato and Magdalene Rolka lead these workshops at SAGE (Services and Advocacy for GLBT Elders). Participants arrive with a story or poem, and then turn their written inspiration into creative music. The teaching artists guide participants to discover the musical forms that can best express their story, mainly using Blues and Jazz musical structures and influences.

<span>SAGE program participant</span>
"It never occurred to me to be writing songs at this point in my life. Your process made it so easy — simple rhythm, to chanting, to chords, to ambient soundscape, to this and that — sure, all pretty wonderful — but your patient support, your caring, your joy, your palpable love of music, and dare I say, your tenacity, led us to some pretty amazing and sophisticated self expression [… It’s] so nice when angels arrive to show you how to turn the quiet little song in your heart into something grand for everybody."
Jay SAGE program participant

Lenox Hill Neighborhood House Senior Center at Saint Peter's Church

Opera Appreciation Course

Simon Saad of Ansonia Music Outreach leads this opera appreciation class in collaboration with TBMS faculty artists. TBMS’s faculty artists provide presentations on topics including vocal techniques used by operatic performers, artist performance preparation for the works of specific composers, and presentations of brief performances of operatic works from the music period that the class is currently studying. This collaboration includes several visits from TBMS’s faculty artists at key points in the curriculum, as well as full performances of operatic scenes and full operettas. Program participants enjoy the opportunity to interact closely with contemporary operatic artists, and are also encouraged to attend TBMS’s free Artist Series concerts.

The Center @ Lenox Hill Neighborhood House

Creative Music Making Workshops

Like TBMS, Lenox Hill Neighborhood House has a long history of supporting a community inclusive of all ages, and TBMS is pleased to partner with them to provide a Creative Music Making Workshop with an intergenerational component. TBMS teaching artists lead seniors in workshops based in the teachings of Orff Schulwerk, a holistic and social approach to teaching music that encourages healthy collaborative work and frequent opportunities for self-expression and physical activity. Participants work with young students from TBMS’s Saturday Music Project.

Stein Senior Center

Choral Program

Our choral program consists of weekly Stein Senior Chorus rehearsals at Stein, as well as collaborative rehearsals to work on shared repertoire with both the TBMS Adult Community Chorus and our public school choruses. The culminating goal for each fall and spring session is for the TBMS Stein Senior Center chorus to come together with TBMS choruses for an intergenerational concert performance. Stein participants have the opportunity to rehearse with students in other TBMS choruses and share their experiences with our young public school choristers.

<span>Executive Director, Stein Senior Center</span>
"Most of our members cannot afford to go to the Metropolitan Opera or Lincoln Center to hear live music, so it was a rare opportunity for them. The three performers – soprano, tenor and pianist – were excellent and we got many good reviews from our members…. We are so glad to collaborate with Turtle Bay Music School and look forward to a fruitful year ahead."
Jane Barry Executive Director, Stein Senior Center


Our creative aging programs are made possible by many funders to whom we are extremely grateful, including The Fan Fox & Leslie R. Samuels Foundation, the Manhattan Chamber of Commerce, and Situs Co.

This program is supported, in part, by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council and by the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo and the New York State Legislature.