Frequently Asked Questions

Hi there and thanks for taking the time to view this page. Now that you have been with us for a while, some of these questions may have already come up and others that probably will in the future. If you have a question that isn’t on this page, please email

When are you open / closed?

Please presume that you always have a lesson on your set day / time. Almost 100% of the time we will email you a friendly reminder that we are closed, however we won’t email you to tell you we are open. We do not close just because the schools do. We are open for lessons on Columbus day, MLK day, Presidents day etc. The only Mondays that we are always closed for are Memorial and Labor day. The very best resource is

Also, our group guitar and rock bands generally have a week off in between sessions, generally the private students do not. If you have siblings in both group and private lessons, you should be aware of this. Again, has the answers for you.

How do your make-ups work?

Please recognize that your lesson time is reserved specifically for you. This means that your lesson slot is unavailable to other students and the teacher has made a commitment to instruct you at that time. Please make every effort to come to your lesson and avoid scheduling other activities during your lesson time. Consistent attendance helps ensure good progress.

If you must cancel or reschedule a lesson, a minimum of 24 hours notice is needed if you would like to receive a make-up lesson and will afford us the opportunity to give your missed class to someone else as a make-up. When you enroll, you will be emailed your own personal login info so you can see your student on the calendar. You will then be able to:

a) mark yourself absent for a lesson (which will automatically add a make-up to your account, if you are canceling with more than 24 hours notice)

b) View your account at anytime and see when your instructor has open times in their schedule which you can schedule your make-up for.

In addition, when you cancel a lesson your instructor will receive an emailed notification.

Please note that if you do not schedule yourself (or child) absent using the online software within 24 hours of the lesson start time, you will not receive a make-up and forfeit that lesson, regardless of the reason. (Instructors will still be paid for within 24 hour cancellations)

Also, in the instances where your instructor is sick / family emergency and cannot teach you at your designated time, we will add a make-up to your account which you will be able to use in the near future.

The tuition fees for lessons that are cancelled with less than 24 hours notice are forfeited. Your teacher is not obligated to provide a make-up lesson for “no shows” or “late cancellations”. Students may not use “credit” from a missed lesson to reduce the tuition for a subsequent month. The tuition remains the same; there are no refunds for missed and cancelled lessons, unless caused by the teacher’s unavailability.

Telling your instructor or James while in the building, while helpful, doesn’t guarantee you will receive a make-up. We want our instructors to only focus on teaching and no worry about scheduling. Often it is so busy at DSR it is hard for us to update the calendar while lessons are happening. Thanks for understanding.

If you no show to a lesson or cancel within 24 hours you lose that lesson. Why? Because we don’t have time to fill your spot that day which is how our instructors stay busy and paid. Your instructor is still paid if you don’t make your lesson. Please use your student login page as soon as you know you will miss however, so the instructor can be informed and make plans for the 30 minute break.

What if my instructor is sick or needs to miss a lesson(s)?

Our instructors are not immune (unfortunately) from getting sick and from time to time need to take a day off due to illness. When this happens, we have several fantastic sub instructors to call upon. They are all educated and experienced music teachers (and generally referred to us by our own full time team). If they are available on short notice to teach your rocker, we will put them on the schedule for that day. We will send you a courtesy email to let you know what the deal is.

In the event that a sub is not available for that day, we will add a make-up to your account for future use. We do not credit tuition for a student or instructor miss due to illness or schedule conflict.

The same thing goes for when an instructor needs to miss a lesson due to personal schedule conflicts. We generally have several weeks notice of these and the impact on the schedule, your rockers lesson, minimal.

Who are the instructors at DSR?

Now that you have been in the building for a while, you have probably noticed that not only is your instructor awesome, they all are! One big factor that sets DSR apart from all other music schools, is our consistency and conscious effort to be thoughtful towards our fantastic teachers and take into consideration their musical lives. We constantly hear from new students who have taken lessons elsewhere, that their biggest complaint was instructor turnover and inconsistency. We are only open for private lessons Monday through Thursday. This is so our instructors are not required to work weekends which allows them to be able to rock super hard in their own bands and projects. Also, who wants to work Fridays, Saturdays or Sundays?

Instructor Bios


Are there performance opportunities?

The BIG show

Yes. Students have the opportunity to perform several times per year and in a variety of ways. We have a large group guitar program (up to 6 guitar players in each group) and these rockers perform 3 times per year (Nov, Feb, May) at The BIG show. These are full band performances and the additional instrumentalists consisting of piano, drums, voice and bass are made up of private students.

When organizing the BIG show schedule we look at each guitar group, their ages, skill level, etc. and then look through our private lesson roster to see which private students will be a good fit. Their instructors check with them to see if they are interested and voila, rock magic in the making.

The BIG show songs are chosen from our curriculum and consist of rock songs, from The Rolling Stones, Beatles, Red Hot Chili Peppers and numerous other bands. Private students will need to be at least 9 years old to be eligible for participation.

Private Showcase

Our version of the “R” word (recital) is geared for younger students not yet old enough for the BIG show, older students who are not in bands and those that are interested in different genres of music other than rock. These are held mid January and early May in our large band rehearsal room. The private students have multiple options. Perhaps they wish to play a solo piece or two on their instrument (perfect for the 5-7 year olds), which may last a minute or so. Some of the more experienced students may like to play longer pieces and be accompanied by an instructor. Some of our young musicians are artists in their own right and may like to perform / sing an original song they have been working on in their lessons.

For each showcase, we select 3 or 4 song options that will cover the spectrum and give students the option to form a band for the day. They come in and rock your faces off with one of these tunes. Killer.

Want to sit around for 3 hours on a weekend lunchtime and listen to 75, six year olds play Mary had a little lamb? Neither do we. We’re not quite sure why this is the standard in the music school world but we’re certainly not into it. Our showcases have just a handful of performances, which last around 30-45 minutes (total) or so, perfect for the attention span of any siblings not rockin’ that day. These groups offer a variety of performances and you and your family have the rest of the day to enjoy. Perfect.


We have a number of rock bands at DSR. The majority forms at the end the group guitar program (after 9 semesters). During the end of the guitar program someone generally switches to bass and someone becomes a singer. Once we enter the Rock Band program we add a drummer too and often times a piano player. These bands then follow a very successful path of performing together without the aid of instructors.  They often write original material, record songs, brand themselves, book their own shows and basically be awesome.

We also have the option for private students to form bands and have weekly rehearsals + their private lessons. The band program is for 11 and older. It’s not the perfect fit for everyone as there is a time and financial commitment; however, it’s totally worth it. Some of our bands have played venues like, The Palmer event center and the Dell Diamond. Students that enter the band program often have music as their main priority (outside of school of course). If sports or other non-rock related activities will mean their schedule will change session-to-session and have a negative impact on the band (i.e. they need to take 3 months off to play football) then being in a band may not be a good fit. We would encourage them to choose rock, because it is sweet and there is less chance of a concussion.

Rock Dollar Reward Program

We have created a program to help motivate the younger students (geared towards 5-12 year olds) called Rock Dollars. Rock Dollars are our own DSR currency and an instructor can reward a student at their discretion for going above and beyond, either in at home practice or during the lessons. On average a student may earn up to 4-6 dollars in a month and we have a dozen plus prizes that they can then use their earned cash to buy. The prizes range from small candy (2 rock dollars) to sunglasses, water bottles, regular candy and t-shirts (20 rock dollars). Some rockers prefer to save their money for several months and reward themselves with a big ticket item, some kids prefer to use them monthly for smaller items. This program has been really well received and has a great impact on many students.

If you prefer for your child to opt out completely from the program, or not to receive candy as a prize, please let me know in advance and we will inform your instructor.