Young Musicians to Benefit from Music and Film Fest

By JOANNE L. PAPAIANNI

The Lakehouse Music Academy on Lake Avenue in Asbury Park has been a consistent beneficiary of the annual Asbury Park Music and Film Festival since it began and this year is no different.

Music Director Albie Monterrosa said the academy will participate in this year’s festival which runs from April 25 to April 28 with the performance of its students, the Junior Pros, at the screening of the film, “Riot, Redemption and Rock ’n Roll,” in which they are featured.

It is an updated version of the film which was originally shown at the previous festival about the former Upstage club where musicians including Bruce Springsteen and Southside Johnny performed in their teens.

The film features footage of the students performing with Springsteen and Steve Van Zandt, along with the Q & A session that followed from last year’s screening. It will be shown on Sun., April 28 at 3 p.m. at the Paramount.

The Junior Pros will perform at the screening, which Monterrosa says highlights past legends but also addresses the future of rock ’n roll and the Lakehouse Music Academy’s prominent role.

The funds raised for the academy will go toward the school’s Music Saved My Life program which is a 501(c)3 non profit.

The academy itself is a for profit business.

Monterrosa said the effect music has played on students and teachers alike is often discussed.

“We don’t know where we would be right now if music hadn’t entered our lives,” he said. “I grew up in Queens, in a not so great neighborhood, and I came to Asbury Park in the 90s.”

When he and his friends first came they played at the Stone Pony and Fast Lanes which were the only venues.

“I never would have imagined in 2019 what it would look like,” Monterrosa said.

The Music Saved My Life program has been very successful and Monterrosa said he has witnessed transitions in students who have benefitted from the program.

“They rejuvenate their soul through their music,” he said. “Some of them are broken, but hey find their path…they learn social skills.”

Many of those students have received scholarships to the academy or the Hip Hop Institute which operates out of the Boys and Girls Clubs.

The Hip Hop Institute has a studio at the club which allows students to test their music and songwriting skills.

The academy also supplies the Beat Bus which is a traveling studio complete with isolation room and vocal booth.

The LMA serves students mainly from Monmouth and Ocean counties, but students travel from all over the NY Metropolitan area to attend the academy which has over 500 students. As students at the academy they get to experience what it’s like to be a musician or songwriter.

Every semester, Monterrosa said, there are 75 bands that end up playing at Asbury Lanes or the Stone Pony.

The academy also has Moto Records which teaches the skills needed to build an audience as an original band or songwriter.

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