Bach to Rock: Zionsville couple opens music school

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After opening schools in Carmel and Fishers, Zionsville residents Andy and Jennifer Flickner opened a Bach to Rock location in their own community this month at 10895 N. Michigan Rd., continuing their mission to connect people with music.

For five years, the Flickners wanted to open a Bach to Rock in Zionsville, but they were waiting for the right location to become available. Meanwhile, they opened one in Carmel three years ago and one in Fishers in March.

On July 17, Bach to Rock co-owners Andy and Jennifer celebrated the soft opening of their Zionsville location. A grand opening is scheduled for 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. July 31 at the school.

Bach to Rock plans to celebrate its third location, in Zionsville, with a grand opening July 31. (Photo by Jarred Meeks)

Bach to Rock offers private music lessons and group classes to people of all ages and skill levels. Primary instruments, such as guitar, piano and bass, are taught, but additional options are offered, including DJing and string instruments. Jennifer said the schools’ goal is to “bring music to the people.”

“It’s an opportunity for a lot of expression,” Jennifer said of music. “It’s something we can do together, and it’s very relational. It’s something we can share with other people.”

Jennifer said prospective students often arrive not knowing how to play an instrument.

“Over in Carmel, we have students walk in, and they’ve never played anything at all,” she said. “They’ve never touched the piano or an instrument. They’ve been with us for a couple of years, and their progress is amazing. They have found their thing. They may not be a sports kid, but they found their thing that they’re latching onto.”

Many of the schools’ students often show interest in musicals and go on to perform in school shows or local theaters.

Sarah Hund, the Zionsville school’s director who previously was a Beef & Boards dinner theater actress for 12 years before the COVID-19 pandemic, said Bach to Rock offers to group students by age and talent into bands, if desired, allowing them to meet new people and form lasting friendships.

“I think music can be a real, shared experience,” Hund said. “It can connect people to each other. We all feel emotions, and you can express that through music.”

The schools offer a curriculum that allows students to progress from one level to the next. In total, there are four levels.

“We want all students across all three of these locations to have the same abilities, so all of our students, when they graduate from our Level 1, are all on par with each other,” said Zach Higdon, a music teacher at the Zionsville location. “As an instructor, I believe it’s great that there’s this consistency across the board. It doesn’t matter which instructor you are getting. All of our students are getting the same level of education.”

When a student graduates from Level 4, the schools have teachers who can continue to help them progress and refine their skills, Hund said. Following graduation from each level, students are able to record a song in one of the schools’ recording studios.

“They’ll have that recording forever and will be able to say, ‘This is me at 6, playing the piano,’” Hund said.

For more, visit zionsville.b2rmusic.com.

Above, from left, Ally Crocker, Joseph Filipow, Sophia Schneider, David Vega, Evan Burton (with guitar) rock out at a Kids at a A Bach to Rock band camp. (Photo courtesy of Bach to Rock)

Navigating the pandemic

Jennifer Flickner, co-owner of Bach to Rock’s three locations, said the music schools continued to grow during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We switched to 100 percent virtual lessons via Zoom,” Flickner said. “Then we came out of that and did a hybrid of virtual lessons and in-person lessons.”

Flickner said most of the schools’ lessons are in person now that mask mandates have lifted, but many still take virtual lessons because of convenience or because they now live further away.

“Some of our families prefer to be virtual,” Flickner said. “Some families moved and continue to be virtual with us, so it has opened up our teaching window because we can teach people who don’t even live here anymore. Every month we grew, which is pretty amazing in the (COVID-19) pandemic.”


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