5 Can't-Miss Panels At GRAMMY In The Schools Fest 2022


5 Can't-Miss Panels At GRAMMY In The Schools Fest 2022

GRAMMY In The Schools Fest brings three days of virtual panels by artists, educators and music professionals, who will provide insight on navigating the music industry ecosystem

GRAMMYs/Mar 25, 2022 - 06:38 pm

March marks the 37th annual observation of Music in Our Schools Month, a celebration that recognizes the importance of music curriculum in the lives of students and music lovers. With the unprecedented changes to arts programs as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic and economic volatility, preserving music education has never been more crucial.

Yet, funding and access to resources remain obstacles to students receiving classroom music instruction. According to the Save the Music Foundation, more than 5 million public school students lack access to music education. Recent case studies have shown that music in the curriculum improves both overall student academic performance and social-emotional skills.

Keeping in line with the Recording Academy's commitment to lifelong music education, GRAMMY In The Schools Fest (GITS Fest), presented by the GRAMMY Museum, brings GRAMMY Week pomp and circumstance to students, educators and music lovers nationwide. Presented by MusicPower, the three-day virtual event features student and professional performances, as well as informative panels by artists, educators and music professionals. Lessons and other insights from these panels will provide an unforgettable edge for navigating the music industry ecosystem in a rapidly changing professional environment.

GITS Fest will take place virtually Monday, March 28 — Wednesday, March 30, from 11 a.m.-2 p.m. PT daily. The festival culminates in A GRAMMY In The Schools Salute To Music Education, a benefit concert with Nathaniel Rateliff & the Night Sweats taking place Thursday, March 31, at House of Blues Las Vegas at Mandalay Bay; all ticket sales will support the GRAMMY Museum‘s Education Programs. 

This year’s list of panels has something to offer music educators, students and enthusiasts. Registration for the virtual panels is free and open to the public. Switchfoot, Katie Thiroux, Gateways Brass Collective, and Jeff Pilson of Foreigner are just some of the few panelists ready to mentor young musical minds.

Read on for a list of must-see panels at GITS Fest 2022, and learn when and where to stream them. Click here to register.

1. The Artistry And Musicianship In Audio Engineering Panel With Manny Marroquin

Monday, March 28, 1 p.m. PST

Audio engineering is a crucial part of most musical projects and a marketable skill that can extend beyond the music industry. Guatemala-born audio engineer Manny Marroquin boasts a career working with legends such as Whitney Houston, 2Pac, Shakira, Rihanna, and many more. The Hamilton High School (a Los Angeles magnet school for students showing talent in the arts) graduate will discuss how he turned a studio internship into a long lasting sustainable career in the audio industry, and provide professional pointers.

2. The Art Of Tech, Performance, & Business: Career Tips In Music And Beyond With GRAMMY Camp Faculty Membe

Wednesday, March 30, 1 p.m. PST

It’s one thing to be a phenomenal instrumentalist, but it's quite another to be able to mic yourself, tackle live performances and navigate the complexities of contracts, payments and more. Check out this panel featuring GRAMMY Camp faculty members and get some insights regarding this summer’s nonresidential in-person classes in Los Angeles. (Applications are open now through March 31.)

3. Preparing For Performance With Minimal Rehearsal Time Panel Ft. GRAMMY In The Schools Alumni Band

Thursday, March 31, 1 p.m. PST

In an ideal world, we would all have plenty of notice and time to prepare for live shows. But in the music business, when opportunity knocks you have to answer the door. Members of the GRAMMY In The Schools Alumni Band will share how to hit that stage with minimal rehearsal time — a worthwhile skill for musicians at any stage in their career. After all, who wouldn’t want to know more about prepping faster and more efficiently? 

4. Choral Clinic At Alexandria City High School in Alexandria, VA Ft. Music Educator Award Winner Jeffery Redding & Alexandria Choir Director Theodore Thorpe II 

Monday, March 28, noon PST

Most instrumentalists familiar with harmonizing with vocalists (and vice versa), so this panel is a must for anyone who is currently or was previously involved in choral ensemble performance. Held at Alexandria City High School — whose chorus students have performed at Disney World and Busch Gardens in nearby Williamsburg, VA, as well as  for the President of the United States and even appeared on the hit TV show "Glee" — this panel focuses on vocal athleticism. GRAMMY Music Educator Award winner Jeffery Redding and co-panelist Theodore Thorpe II (who has worked with artists such as Mary J. Blige, the Backstreet Boys, Chris Brown, Bruce Springsteen, Janelle Monae and Sheryl Crow) will lend their insight on preparing choral singers. 

5. Cimafunk Discusses Being A Professional Musician

Wednesday, March 30, 11 a.m. PST

Cuban artist Erik Iglesias Rodríguez, who performs as Cimafunk, has toured extensively internationally and was selected as one of Billboard’s Top 10 Latin Artists to Watch. His second LP, El Alimento was released in 2021 and blends Afro-Cuban rhythms and funk (with a little help from collaborators George Clinton and Lupe Fiasco). Known for his high energy performances and considered by some to be Cuba’s biggest breakout musician of the last 10 years, Cimafunk will explain how he professionally navigates the music industry while honoring his roots and staying true to himself. 

​​5 Organizations And Scholarships Supporting Music Education


A GRAMMY Glam Dunk

GRAMMYs/Dec 3, 2014 - 04:22 am

By Will Dawson

For a few hours Tuesday night Hollywood Boulevard was transformed into Glam Central Station as The Recording Academy officially kicked off its 54th GRAMMY Week with the inaugural GRAMMY Glam event.

It was just what you'd expect it to be from the title — an incendiary collision between music and fashion, and beauty and the beats, complete with a GRAMMY gold carpet and enough DJ firepower to ignite a musical bonfire. Sponsored by Olay, CoverGirl and Venus, and featuring the incredible DJ Spinderella (of Salt-N-Pepa), DJ Low Down Loretta Brown (aka Erykah Badu), and dynamic duo the Jane Doze, Hollywood rocked on the dance floor while exploring the cosmetics-filled caverns of the MyHouse nightclub. 

"Each year, we try to reinvent ourselves," said Recording Academy President/CEO Neil Portnow before heading inside. "What we've recognized for years is that there's an intersection between beauty, health, style, fashion, and music. I can't wait to see what our team — who are the best in the world, by the way — put together for tonight."

The Jane Doze opened the night on the ones and twos, with contest winners from also filling in some of the musical menu with their submissions, lending an interactive angle to the evening.

With three themed rooms that featured waterfalls, flames and even contortionists, partygoers had the chance to pose for personalized magazine covers, get tips from professional makeup artists and, while on the venue's main stage, even get a taste of what it's like to be a model on the catwalk.

"It's a marriage made in heaven," said recording artist Goapele. "Music and fashion go hand in hand. It's great that the GRAMMYs saw that and put this great night together."

Other guests echoed those sentiments, and many were excited for the chance to see Badu take her turn as one of the night's DJs.

"I'm from New Orleans and have seen [Badu] perform at Essence [Music Festival] over the years," beamed former Diddy Dirty Money member Dawn Richard. "She's a hero of mine. Everything she does is bold, from her fashion to her musical choices."

Badu's set was filled with blends of everything from GRAMMY-nominated hip-hop collective A Tribe Called Quest to R&B artist Cheryl Lynn. Spinderella spun the classics, giving the crowd an eclectic mix intermingling hits from R&B dance group Nu Shooz to the late Notorious B.I.G.

If all of the guests carrying their coats and heels in hand upon exiting are any indication, a great time was had by all. It was, by all accounts, a glam dunk, and a great way to kick off what promises to be an incredible week leading up to Music's Biggest Night.

Willie Nelson To Be Honored With 2019 Producers & Engineers Wing Award

Willie Nelson

Photo: Larry Busacca/Getty Images


Willie Nelson To Be Honored With 2019 Producers & Engineers Wing Award

The GRAMMY-winning country legend will be honored for his many years of "artistic achievements and creative genius" during GRAMMY Week in February 2019

GRAMMYs/Oct 30, 2018 - 05:31 pm

Willie Nelson may already have many accolades and achievements to his name, including eight GRAMMY Awards, but that doesn't mean there isn't room for more. On Oct. 30 the Recording Academy's Producers & Engineers Wing announced they will be honoring Nelson during GRAMMY Week 2019 to "celebrate [his] artistic achievements and creative genius."

The P&E Wing's 12th annual celebration will take place on Feb. 6, 2019 in Los Angeles, Calif. as part of GRAMMY Week, which culminates with Music's Biggest Night, the 61st GRAMMY Awards on Feb. 10. In addition to honoring Nelson, the event also acknowledges the industry contributions of the Wing's more than 6,400 professional members.

"Each year, the Recording Academy's Producers & Engineers Wing annual GRAMMY week event honors members of the recording community who exhibit exceptional standards of integrity, creativity and sonic quality," said Maureen Droney, Managing Director of the P&E Wing. "We are thrilled to pay homage to Willie Nelson, an undeniable icon with an incomparable—and uncompromising—body of work."

Nelson is a musical force to be reckoned with, a living legend who has released more than 200 albums over his six-decade career, a true leader in outlaw country music, and the larger genre as a whole. He has made an impact in the music industry as a songwriter, performer and collaborator, and in the larger world as an author, actor and activist. He has always used his platform to speak his mind and make a positive impact on those around him, such as with Farm Aid, an annual charity concert he co-founded in 1985 to support family farmers.

To date he has won eight GRAMMYs, taking home his first at the 18th GRAMMY Awards in 1975 for Best Male Country Vocal Performance for his breakout hit "Blue Eyes Crying In The Rain," from Red Headed Stranger. The album was inducted into the GRAMMY Hall of Fame in 2002, followed by several more of Nelson's recordings. Over the years he has been recognized by the Recording Academy on multiple other occasions, receiving the President's Merit Award in 1986, the GRAMMY Legend Award in 1990 and the Lifetime Achievement Award in 2000.

"Willie Nelson has inspired generations of musicians and fans, and continues to set precedents of excellence within the music community," added Recording Academy President/CEO Neil Portnow.

In 2018 the P&E Wing honored power couple Alicia Keys and Swizz Beatz. Prior honorees include Jack WhiteRick RubinNile Rodgers and Neil Young.

2019 GRAMMY Awards To Air Feb. 10, 2019, From Los Angeles

Lineup Set For GRAMMY Classical Salute With Lang Lang

Soprano Isabel Leonard

Photo: Angela Weiss/AFP/Getty Images)


Lineup Set For GRAMMY Classical Salute With Lang Lang

GRAMMY Salute To Classical Music on Jan. 26 to feature Kiana Ledé, Ledisi, Isabel Leonard, Pablo Sainz Villegas, Time For Three, and young pianists celebrating the legacy of Leonard Bernstein

GRAMMYs/Jan 24, 2018 - 03:11 am

Now that GRAMMY Week is here, performers have been announced for the Jan. 26 GRAMMY Salute To Classical Music, hosted by pianist Lang Lang at Carnegie Hall in New York. The rich line-up includes seasoned GRAMMY winners and nominees along with piano prodigies and a youth choir. Let's take a closer look.

The theme of this year's event is celebrating the legacy of legendary composer/conductor Leonard Bernstein. The Recording Academy, in conjunction with CAMI Music, prepared a program ready to take its place among the worldwide performances celebrating "Leonard Bernstein at 100."

To celebrate, the GRAMMY Salute To Classical Music has assembled a world-class collection of multigenre artists who will perform, including soprano Isabel Leonard, R&B star Ledisi, string trio Time For Three, Los Angeles-based R&B artist Kiana Ledé, and Spanish guitarist Pablo Sáinz Villegas. In addition, Lang Lang's Lang Lang International Music Foundation will be featured onstage as more than a dozen young prodigies share their musical insights into Bernstein's vision.

Concluding the program, a youth chorus from The Frank Sinatra School of the Arts, founded by Tony Bennett, and members of the Harmony Program will perform the finale with Leonard for a multigenerational look to the past and the future.

Like classical music itself, Bernstein's legacy is alive. Friday night will be a chance to enjoy its flourishing.

Lang Lang To Celebrate Leonard Bernstein: GRAMMY Salute To Classical Music

Kent Knappenberger To Receive Inaugural Music Educator Award
Kent Knappenberger


Kent Knappenberger To Receive Inaugural Music Educator Award

New York music teacher and choir director to be honored at the Special Merit Awards Ceremony & Nominees Reception during GRAMMY Week

GRAMMYs/Dec 3, 2014 - 05:06 am

Kent Knappenberger of Westfield Academy and Central School in Westfield, N.Y., has been announced as the recipient of the first annual Music Educator Award presented by The Recording Academy and the GRAMMY Foundation.

A total of nine music teachers from nine cities across seven states are finalists for the award. In total, more than 30,000 initial nominations were submitted from all 50 states. The nine finalists will receive a $1,000 honorarium, and the schools of all 10 finalists also will receive matching grants.

"I am extremely humbled and honored to be the recipient of the first-ever Music Educator Award," said Knappenberger. "I believe that this award has already been and will continue to be a tremendous encouragement to all music educators. Besides the attention it has brought to many fine teachers, it brings attention to the importance of music education in general."

View a complete list of Music Educator Award finalists

"The Recording Academy and the GRAMMY Foundation created this award to highlight the extraordinary influence of music teachers on their students in and beyond the classroom," said Neil Portnow, President/CEO of the GRAMMY Foundation and The Recording Academy. "Many musicians would not be expressing their gift for creativity had it not been for the dedication and encouragement of a music teacher who inspired them to pursue a professional career."

Knappenberger has been a music teacher and choir director at Westfield Academy and Central School for 25 years. He holds a bachelor's degree from the State University of New York at Fredonia and a master's degree in music education, harp performance and literature from Eastman School of Music, and is a member of the National Education Association. Knappenberger has taken his passion for teaching abroad by serving as a volunteer music teacher at the Ana Gonzaga Methodist Institute in Rio de Janeiro. He currently resides in Westfield with his wife and children.

The Music Educator Award was established to recognize current educators (kindergarten through college, public and private schools) who have made a significant and lasting contribution to the field of music education and who demonstrate a commitment to the broader cause of maintaining music education in the schools. Each year, one recipient will be selected from 10 finalists, and will be recognized for his/her remarkable impact on students' lives.

Knappenberger will be flown to Los Angeles to accept the award at the Special Merit Awards Ceremony & Nominees Reception on Jan. 25, attend the 56th Annual GRAMMY Awards ceremony, and receive a $10,000 honorarium.

Applications for the second annual Music Educator Award are currently online at The deadline to nominate a teacher is March 31. The application process will be adjusted each year to allow the broad array of effective teaching styles and methods used in the discipline to be recognized and awarded.