New online music platform providing opportunities for kids, artists struggling in the pandemic

DANBURY, Conn. (WTNH) — “I’m a keyboard player; I mostly like jazz fusion,” said Ridgefield 8th grader Rohan Connally.

To augment his in-person instruction at School of Rock, he signed up for a new online music platform offering instruction from celebrity musicians.

“I’m a big fan of Cory Henry‘s,” he explained. “I thought it would be really interesting to take one of these classes.”

So, he can actually take a class online and hear straight from this well-known keyboard master.

“It taught me a lot, and I learned a lot from it,” said Rohan.

“Our music platform is called YousicPlay,” said Alain Merville, a jazz pianist and professor at Berklee College of Music.

He worked with 7 Avenue Media in Danbury to create the unique e-learning platform, which launched in January, right before the pandemic hit.

“The timing was not planned but it’s worked out for us,” said Merville.

In a time when the arts are struggling, YousicPlay is providing a unique opportunity and revenue stream for professionals who are suddenly more available to teach.

“A lot of musicians have had to pivot,” explained Merville. “I think everyone is trying to figure it out, and luckily, we’ve been able to help our instructors do just that.”

It is making the most of a tough situation — for experts and young musicians — looking to grow talent in a modern way.

Rohan said he wants more classes.

“Oh yes, I’d love to! I’d like to take many kinds of different ones, even for different instruments like drums or something. It’s been very interesting and exciting.”

Merville anticipates another different summer ahead. So, he plans to beef up YousicPlay’s content to provide robust online options for kids.