LEARN MORE ABOUT BHMA

WHO WE ARE

Life Skills, Vocation, Music & Arts

Berkshire Hills Music Academy is a unique college-like program for young adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities who are looking to expand their social, vocational, and life skills in a music-infused environment.

THE VALUE OF MUSIC

Music uniquely stimulates all areas of the brain, promoting significant opportunity for enhanced learning and retention. Our highly trained staff employs the therapeutic value of music to help students, regardless of experience or aptitude, improve and increase:

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PHYSICAL ABILITIES

Gross and fine motor skills, spatial awareness, and organized muscle responses

COMMUNICATION

SKILLS

Speech, articulation, and language organization & retrieval

COGNITIVE FUNCTIONING

Focus, attention, and engagement

SOCIAL SKILLS
Teamwork, problem solving, and self-advocacy

STUDENT STORIES

Carly Ziemba

Since graduating from BHMA’s two-year program in 2017, she has focused on expressing herself through dance, art, and music as part of the LIVE Program.

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Carly Ziemba in her Trader Joe's uniform holding up a jar of pasta sauce in the middle of a grocery store aisle.
Jack Ryan

“I’m good at dates,” declares second-year student Jack Ryan with conviction.

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Jack Ryan, wearing a red zip-up sweatshirt, looks down at his hands as he plays with a bright purple ball; a Circles rainbow is visible in the background.
Jen Barrett

As a member of the Ascending Artist Program, Jen makes a range of creations and earns a paycheck from sales at art shows, local businesses, and our online marketplace.

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Jen Barrett holds a camera to her eye and photographs a flowering plant in a greenhouse.
Mark Palardy

Mark, who has Noonan syndrome and experiences hearing loss as well, is passionate about music, and his schedule is centered around using it as a means of employment.

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Mark Palardy, wearing a blue plaid button-down shirt, smiles at the camera as he sits at the keyboard.

UPCOMING EVENTS

December 17: Winter break begins 

Upcoming Gigs:
Variety Hour: Every Friday at 2:00pm

December 2: Holiday Stroll at South Hadley Village Commons 5:00pm

December 3: Jazz Ensemble at Wistariahurst Museum (Holyoke) from 11:00-1:00pm

December 5: Woodwind Group at Longmeadow Country Club 8:00-8:45pm

December 7: Sound Squad at South Hadley Public Library 6:30-7:15pm

December 11: Yarde Tavern South Hadley​ from 3:00-6:00pm

December 12: Franklin and Tori at Catholic Women's Club of Agawam 7:00-8:00pm

December 15: Art Show at BHMA 12:30-2:30pm

December 16: BHMA

  • 1:00pm- "Battle of the Holidays" an original play by the BHMA acting class 

  • 2:00pm- "A Winter Holiday Wish" the BHMA House Band's holiday program

  • 6:00pm- "BHMA Holiday Concert" featuring all BHMA ensembles!

December 18: Yarde Tavern South Hadley​ from 3:00-6:00pm

Check Us Out on Instagram

INSTAGRAM UPDATES

Hire Our Performers

BHMA’s music vocation program supports the goals and talents of its aspiring and professional musicians. Sharing their passion on stage raises visibility, promotes acceptance, and changes perceptions of people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. 

Music Instructor Joel Turcotte plays the piano.

CONNECT WITH BHMA

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