Dear Sunburst Students, 

First, we want to thank everyone for sticking with us during the COVID-19 pandemic! It has been and continues to be a difficult time for everyone. All in all–based on feedback from our students and instructors–our lessons on Zoom have been quite successful and they’re now a permanent part of our business model. However, Zoom lessons don’t work perfectly for all students, and now that Pennsylvania has moved into the Green Phase, we’ve made a plan to resume in-person lessons safely and at a limited capacity starting July 1st.

Sunburst is now offering online lessons and programs through Zoom! We put together a guide to help students get the most out of their online lesson experience.

Dear Sunburst Students and Families,

It is hard to find the words to express our sorrow and outrage at the continued racism that is being televised nationally and witnessed in many of our communities around Pittsburgh. We at Sunburst are standing together for Justice. From our admin team to all of our instructors, our intention at this moment is to listen to the voices of our students of color, and we are currently educating ourselves on how we can affect positive change.

I would also like to remind all of our students and families that music can be a great healing agent, and a source of unification, which is what the nation needs right now. 

We want to highlight some local African American-led organizations in Pittsburgh working to improve the lives of our young people through the arts, please consider donating or reaching out to them to learn more: 1 Hood Media, Center of Life, YWCA Pittsburgh, The Lighthouse Project to name a few. There are also local and national organizations leading the fight against racial injustice, here are a few (including 1 Hood, above): Color of Change, Black Lives Matter, WHATS UP?!, Urban League of Greater Pittsburgh, My Brothers Keeper, NAACP Pittsburgh.

Alex Stanton
Sunburst School of Music

It’s that time of year again! We’re excited to announce our 2020 Spring Break and Summer Camp Lineup! At Sunburst, our camps are all about learning new and fun aspects of music-making, working together on multimedia projects, and performing in front of a live audience. This year our campers will create an EDM-inspired playlist of their own beats and loops, put together a 90’s rock show for the ages, write and perform a funk-rock opera, and record an album of all-original music in our recording studio. 

Sign up before March 1st and get $50 off! We have multi-camp and referral discounts available, and financial aid as needed. Read about our camps and sign up here, and let our admin team know if you have any questions.

Beats and Loops ResizeFunk Opera posterCamp Studio 1

60224231 1228666227302338 3344494331930083328 nCheck out some of these upcoming shows from Sunburst students and instructors and support local music! 

3/13 - hunnycomb single release with Donora at Spirit Lodge

  • Catch Sunburst instructors Chloe, Kevin and Casey and Sunburst News Editor in Chief, Alex
  • Doors 9:00PM
  • $10 Advance / $13 Door
  • 21+

3/21 - Tunnel Vision at Sunburst

  • Spring into Spring with an evening of classic rock featuring Tunnel-Vision (Lead by Sunburst student Richard) and opening act Sunburnt (One of our SBR 21+ Bands).
  • Doors 6:00PM, Show 6:45-9:00PM
  • $10
  • BYOB

3/28 - 2020 Sunburst House Band debut performance at Pittsburgh Ed Fest

  • The inaugural show for this year’s house band takes place at Pittsburgh Ed Fest at Oakland Catholic High School
  • Show 1:00-1:20PM

sam bio picOur teacher of the month for February is our amazing voice teacher Sam!

What kind of music do you like to play?

I always sang really classical stuff in college, and that's still my go-to, but lately, I've enjoyed playing guitar and singing some more contemporary stuff, and seeing how my "classical" voice can be used in a popular music context. 

How did you get into music? 

I always loved singing, and when I was 13 I started taking voice lessons and never stopped. I went into college undecided about what I wanted to do, and I ended up majoring in music because it was the one thing I always came back to. 

What's your favorite thing about being a teacher? 

I love helping people discover their own potential. I know first hand how powerful it feels to have your voice to something you didn't know you were capable of, or to feel pride in something you've been working on, and as a teacher, I get to guide students through that experience and it's awesome.

Any advice for aspiring musicians out there? 

When it comes to voice, there's a misconception that you need to have some kind of innate talent to be a singer or a voice student. Plenty of people, of all ages, start piano or guitar without knowing anything beforehand, and voice is the same way. Anyone can learn to sing, and it takes just as much practice and hard work as any other instrument to be good at it. 

Sunburst is starting a songwriter video series where we’ll be featuring students of all ages working on their own original music. It’s a great opportunity for any of our students to highlight what they’re working on, and a great milestone to work towards. We'll be announcing our first shoot in the next month.

Please RSVP here if you’d like to participate!


Sunburst is welcoming 3 new instructors this month! Here's a little bit about each of them:

Ryan Hoffman squareRyan - Guitar and Uke Instructor

  • Fun Fact: I'm a runner
  • Favorite Genre of Music: Indie Rock
  • Why do you love music?: Music can be different things in so many different ways. It can be peaceful, energizing, or calming. It is a great way too of channeling your emotions.


Aaron SquareAaron - Voice Instructor

  • Fun Fact: I'm fluent in German
  • Favorite Genre of Music: Indie Pop
  • Why do you love music?: Music is a great way to meet people and connect with them! 



Matt Price Square

Matt - Drum Instructor

  • Fun Fact: I know how to juggle!
  • Favorite Genre of Music: Instrumental music from ambient electronics and progressive metal
  • Why do you love music?: Music is a universal language that is a tool for expressing the inexpressible.

We are working on some new options for supplemental programs geared towards our adult students, and we would love to get some of your ideas! We’ll be hosting a focus group for our adult students on Saturday, January 25th from 3-5pm, and would like to invite any adult student to come and share their ideas.

Please RSVP by emailing, calling, or stopping in at the desk, and let us know if you have any questions.

House Band

The Sunburst House Band is an exciting opportunity for our most dedicated students to really get serious about playing and performing. Each year we hold an audition open to any students ages 10-17 to try out for voice, guitar, keyboards, bass or drums. Afterward our panel of judges will select the most advanced students for each instrument and draft a 6-8 person group for the 2020 Season.

The House Band meets once per week on Sunday evenings for rehearsals and performs upwards of 20 times per year at a variety of shows and events all over Pittsburgh. The band also records regularly and works on original material.

Full information on how to prepare for our House Band Auditions can be found here.

We’d also like to say here that going through the process of an audition is a valuable skill-builder in and of itself, so we’d like to encourage absolutely everyone interested to audition.

There are a few shows left for the 2019 House Band, catch them this Friday 1/10 performing at Sunburst!